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Carnegie Mellon University's Chemistry Laboratory—A Building Retrofit with Labs21

Volker Hartkopf, Carnegie Mellon University


Carnegie Mellon University is a Laboratory for the 21st Century Pilot Partner. The university is making plans for a new undergraduate chemistry laboratory. This laboratory will also function in part to support research projects.

The Center for Building Performance and Diagnostics (CBPD) and its supporting Advanced Building Systems Integration Consortium (ABSIC) will cooperate with the university to create an energy and environmentally effective laboratory that meets the educational requirements and minimizes health and safety risks.


Recently the first workshop regarding this project was held at Carnegie Mellon University before the Labs 21 course material was presented to an audience of architects, engineers, facility managers and university decision makers.

For the near future it was decided to hold several workshops related to this specific educational/research laboratory. At this time three workshop topics have been identified. These workshops will have the following foci:

1. Fume hoods
Individual health and safety requirements.
Ventilation rates and Fume hood design.
Clustering fume hoods versus fume hood distribution.

  • How do these issues influence overall heating and cooling and ventilation requirements?
    Can water-based systems be employed for cooling and heating, or are all air-systems recommended?

2. Control systems
Presently control systems exist separately for lighting, HVAC, fire, life-safety. However, integrated systems are necessary for energy, environmental and health safety requirements.

  • This workshop will outline the requirements and seek partnerships for the development of such an integrated system.

3. To meet and exceed minimal LEED™ requirements
A workshop will be held that seeks to identify opportunities to meet at least 2% of the total collective load with renewable energies. This workshop will also focus on the LEED™ goal to optimize energy performance by 50%.

  • This paper will present the findings as they exist at the time of the conference.

Labs21 Connection:

  • Energy and environmental effectiveness
  • LEED™ certification
  • Systems integration and design


Volker Hartkopf, Ph.D., School of Architecture, Director
Center for Building Performance and Diagnostics, Carnegie Mellon University

Since the fall of 1972 Dr. Hartkopf teaches and conducts research at Carnegie Mellon University. In 1975 he co-initiated and subsequently directed, until 1981, the first multi--disciplinary program in Architecture, Engineering and Planning in the United States of America with grants from the National Science Foundation and the building industry. In 1981 he founded the Center for Building Performance and Diagnostics at the University. Between 1981-1985 Prof. Hartkopf was on partial leave from Carnegie Mellon University and developed, jointly with Vivian Loftness and Peter A.D. Mill, the Total Building Performance Evaluation Method at Public Works Canada on Executive Interchange.

Based on the research and development needs identified in this method, Dr. Hartkopf has created and directs a consortium of leading building industries (material, component, and systems manufacturers), six U.S. government agencies, two foreign governmental agencies and one university. In operation since 1988, the Advanced Building Systems Integration Consortium (ABSIC)1 has completed international studies on the impact of advanced technology in office buildings in Japan, the United Kingdom, Germany, North America and France. ABSIC has chosen a 12 year research and demonstration effort on the impact of advanced technology upon the physical, environmental, and social settings in office buildings, towards creating high performance work environments. The consortium, in cooperation with Carnegie Mellon has designed, constructed and maintained the Robert L. Preger Intelligent Workplace, officially opened in the winter of 1997.

Professor Hartkopf was instrumental in creating a joint initiative between Carnegie Mellon University and the Daimler-Benz Corporation (now DaimlerChrysler) in 1996. The resulting Global Field Support Consortium (GFS) consisted of seven Global Hardware, Software and Service Providers2 dedicated to creating the marketing and service environment of a Global 50 Corporation. At Carnegie Mellon this work was conducted by a team of six research institutes, including the Center for Building Performance and Diagnostics.

As a service to the University, Professor Hartkopf has held numerous offices, including Chair of the Faculty Senate 1989-90 during the year of transition from President Cyert to President Mehrabian; Member, Committee to Evaluate the President 1986-87; Member, Presidential Search Committee 1989-90; Member, University Tenure Committee; Chair, Departmental and College Tenure and Promotion Committees, Member Educational Facilities Committee 1987-90.

Professor Hartkopf realized as an architect building projects in Germany, Bangladesh, Peru and the United States. He led Master Planning efforts for Volkswagen A.G. and the City of Wolfsburg, Germany; EXPO 2000 Hanover and Berlin Lichtenberg, Germany.

Teamwork under his leadership has received the Solar Age Magazine Award, Second Prize, 1983; Progressive Architecture Research Award, 1986; Honorable Mention, from the fifth annual American Institute of Architects (AIA) Educational Honors jury; the Teaching Award for the course sequence: Design for Building Performance: An Integrative Approach, 1992; the Three Rivers Environmental Award in the category of higher education, 1996; the AIA Pittsburgh Chapter Honor Award, 1998; the AIA National Honor Award, 1999; the Business Week/Architectural Record Awards, 1999; the Merit Award by the American Institute of Steel Construction, 2001 I.D.E.A.S. Awards Program, 2001.

Professor Hartkopf has been frequently cited in the professional literature. A frequent keynote speaker in Europe, Asia and the Americas, he authored over 100 technical publications: books, journal articles, reports, and conference proceedings.

Professor Hartkopf continues his consulting with such organizations as DaimlerChrysler, Volkswagen, Thyssen Krupp, Electricité de France, U.S. Department of State, U.S. Department of Energy and Siemens.

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