Nanoscience Sustainability - Lawrence Berkeley National
Laboratory's New Molecular Foundry
William L. Diefenbach,
AIA, Suzanne Napier, AIA, and Irene
Monis, AIA, LEED® AP, SmithGroup
Steve Greenberg, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory focuses on research into sustainable
building and energy technologies. Their new Molecular Foundry has
been designed and constructed to further their mission and provide
a model for sustainable design within the difficult constraints
of state-of-the-art Nanoscience laboratory design. This presentation
uses a case study of this facility to explore opportunities for
increasing both environmental responsibility and workplace quality
consistent with institutional mission and commitment.
The Molecular Foundry is one of five new nanoscale science research
centers to be built by the Department of Energy's Office of Science
to provide researchers with world-class facilities for nanotechnology,
the interdisciplinary study of matter at the atomic level. It will
be the only lab of its type on the west coast. The Molecular Foundry,
which opened in March of 2006, is a six-story, 94,500 sq. ft. structure.
It will have a 4,000 sq. ft. Class 1000 and a 725 sq. ft. Class
100 cleanroom for nanfabrication/lithography, and a 5,500 sq. ft.
low vibration, low electromagnetic field laboratory housing state-of-the-art
imaging and manipulation tools. The Molecular Foundry is a landmark
building that juts forth from a steep slope in the Berkeley hills
overlooking San Francisco Bay.
The structure has been designed with special seismic and vibration
mitigations because of its close proximity to the active Hayward
earthquake fault and the unusually high building performance standards
needed for nanoscience research. The Foundry's spectacular site
drops 70 feet vertically per 200 linear feet, a 35 percent grade.
Our design team used the steep slope to the client's advantage.
By burying the bulk of the building's two first floors, the team
used the earth to shield extraordinarily sensitive nanotech equipment
from vibration, and separate it from other laboratory areas that
lacked the same sensitivity. Vibration sensitive equipment is stacked
on multiple levels giving higher quality of life to researchers
in other, more commonly used work spaces.
LBNL has made the Molecular Foundry a model for sustainable, energy
efficient design and is expected to earn a LEED Silver rating from
the U.S. Green Building Council incorporating the following benefits:
- The Molecular Foundry is projected to consume 30 percent less
energy than the already-stringent California Title 24 requirement
for laboratory buildings.
- In order to identify which products were sufficiently durable
for a laboratory environment, LBNL researchers worked with SmithGroup
to test finishes and materials used in lab areas as part of the
- Recycled content was specified whenever possible, and over 80
percent of all building construction waste will be recycled.
- All wood is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. This
is 50 percent more than required for the LEED Silver certification.
- Low emission carpet, paint, sealants and adhesives, along with
renewable materials, such as bamboo flooring and cabinetry in
the interaction spaces, create a healthier indoor environment.
- Exterior shading and advanced envelope design to increase energy
effectiveness and improve workplace quality.
- Variable volume fume hood exhaust and limited combination sash
position fume hood operation
- Use of electronically commutated brushless DC hi-efficiency
motors and lower airflows/face velocities a the clean room fan-filter
- Use of lower than conventional duct air flow velocities (approximately
0.06" per 100' friction loss but not more than 1,500 fpm
vs 0.1" per 100' friction loss and 2,000 fpm).
- Use of high efficiency chillers (0.35-0.40 NPLV Vs 0.45-0.50
NPLV - units of kw/ton).
William L. Diefenbach, AIA, graduated from the University
of Michigan with a Bachelor of Architecture in 1972. As SmithGroup
Senior Vice President, Board Member, and Science and Technology
Studio Leader, Mr. Diefenbach is responsible for all stages of work
on research laboratory and academic projects. Mr. Diefenbach's strength
lies in his ability to take great architectural design concepts
through to a viable project that is completed on time and within
budget. His previous work experience includes three projects with
Laboratory of the Year awardsCalTech's Broad Center, UCSF
Genentech Hall and Chevron Ortho Research Center. Other recent research
laboratories include UC Davis Genome and Biological Sciences Facility,
UCSF Mt. Zion Cancer Research Laboratory, University of Alaska -
Fairbanks Biological & Computational Sciences Facility, UC Berkeley
College of Chemistry Unit III, UC Berkeley CITRIS Headquarters and
San Jose State University - Moss Landing Marine Laboratory. Currently,
Mr. Diefenbach is designing the new Cardiovascular Research Institute
for UCSF. For the LBNL Molecular Foundry, he was responsible as
the Design Principal for all efforts.
Suzanne Napier, AIA, has a diverse
background in the profession from the design process through implementation
of projects. Ms. Napier is very facile at understanding the programmatic/functional
and aesthetic requirements of each client and lucidly translating
them into sound architectural projects. Her previous work includes
UCSF's Genentech Hall, 2003 Special Mention for Laboratory of the
Year. As Project Manager for the Molecular Foundry, she was entirely
responsible for all team organization and coordination from concept/programming
stage through construction administration.
Irene Monis, AIA, LEED, has a portfolio
that includes wide range of projects, including institutional, commercial,
and residential work. Her recent laboratory experience includes
the design of UCSF's Genentech Hall in San Francisco. Ms. Monis
has been certified as a LEED accredited professional by the Green
Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design,
and has become the green building expert of SmithGroup's San Francisco
office. For the Molecular Foundry, Ms. Monis as Project Architect
was responsible for all technical documentation and coordination
with building systems engineering throughout the 18 month design
effort. She then continued with the project as Construction Administrator
on the job site for two years of construction. She is now completing
the LEED documentation for submission.
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