Air Change Rate Optimization

Shannon Horn, University of Colorado Boulder
Timothy Lockhart, University of Colorado Boulder

This presentation and session will share the approach that the University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder) is using to achieve the DOE Smart Labs Accelerator goals while also benefiting other campus wide initiatives such as increased safety in laboratories, laboratory occupant engagement, efficient laboratory equipment and space utilization, optimized capital construction investments, and continuous improvement of building operations. Our approach is integrative and collaborative involving many campus stakeholders from upper administration to laboratory users. This approach enables our campus to align resources and maximize the benefits realized from limited funding and labor sources. The Air Change optimization is at the heart of the initiative to realize safety, IAQ, Deferred maintenance, and sustainability efforts at CU Boulder.

Learning Objectives

  • Learn how CU Boulder plans to achieve the DOE Smart Labs Accelerator goal of 20% energy reduction in laboratory buildings through ACH optimization;
  • Learn about the stakeholders and roles involved in our integrative approach and how aligning resources enables more to be accomplished with less funding;
  • Learn about the other campus efforts and initiatives that are benefiting from our integrative, collaborative approach; and
  • Learn about the challenges faced and lessons learned while implementing our plans.


Shannon Horn is a professional engineer and LEED AP®, with a Bachelor of Science degree from Colorado State University. Ms. Horn is the Principle campus mechanical engineer for CU Boulder, where she holds a diversity of responsibilities from commissioning agent, to AHJ to supporting energy conservation projects and initiatives campus-wide.

Timothy Lockhart is a certified industrial hygienist and certified hazardous materials manager with a Bachelor of Science in environmental chemistry and toxicology and a Master's of Science in industrial hygiene from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Currently employed as an industrial hygienist for CU Boulder, Mr. Lockhart is responsible for a variety of programs, ranging from indoor air quality to employee exposure assessments, hazardous exhaust ventilation, and employee trainings.


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