Want ASHRAE to honor or recognize a colleague? (10/3)

Do you know an engineer who has recently graduated from school and has made an impact in the work environment?  Or how about a candidate who has worked on a unique project that has had (or will have) a broad impact on the public or industry?

If you do, then you have a candidate for ASHRAE’s New Faces of Engineering recognition program, a part of National Engineers Week. Engineers 30 years of age or younger as of December 31, 2010, are the focus of the recognition program. Nominees must have a degree in engineering from a recognized U.S. college or university, or from an equivalent international educational institution. Degrees in engineering technology, science, computer science, and similar disciplines do not qualify; a degree in computer engineering is acceptable.

Complete nominations must be submitted to ASHRAE by Monday, October 18, 2010.  For questions or more information, please contact Firouz Keikavousi at firouzk@gmail.com.

By, Firouz Keikavousi –  Honors & Awards  Chair, 2010-2011

Chapter Programs – Bringing ASHRAE Technology to YOU! (10/3)

Happy Fall to all friends and members of ASHRAE!

First, I would like to thank all of our membership who attended our first meeting where we had the opportunity of hosting Mr. Gordon Holness.  For all who missed the opportunity to see Gordon’s presentation on ASHRAE’s building EQ Energy Labeling program you missed a glimpse into an exciting new way to add value to energy efficient design and management practices.  For your convenience, a copy of Gordon’s power point presentation will be available on the website for review.

This month we are excited to host Mr. Brice Wentworth, P.E. and Mr. Jonathan Cantwell of Rolf Jensen & Associates, Inc.  Mr. Wentworth and Mr. Cantwell will be delivering a presentation covering the basics of using CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) computer modeling for fire and smoke development in large spaces or atriums.  In addition, the presentation will cover the importance of input criteria, modeling characteristics/limitations, and how the modeling can be used to validate smoke exhaust systems and optimize their efficiencies.  This presentation will also compare the performance of building models to the prescriptive Florida Building code and Life Safety Code Requirements.

We are also continuing with our successful YEA Tech topics this month by welcoming Rachel Cook, P.E. of Terrastructure  Engineering Corporation to discuss the building energy modeling process showcasing the Tyndall Air Force Base Fitness Center project.  This project is an energy demonstration project for the Air Force that has recently completed construction, and is pursuing LEED platinum certification.  Rachel has been involved with the design and development of this project since 2007.

I look forward to seeing you all on October 14th for another exciting program!

By, John Miller –  President Elect & Programs Chair, 2010-2011

Refrigerant Safety – Your car’s refrigerant in 2013 ? (10/3)

On the critical topic of life safety, choice of refrigerant is a very important consideration a designer should be very cognizant about.  ASHRAE Standard 15-2004 duly assigns two character alpha-numeric designations to denote refrigerant safety.  Two characters make up this designation – an alphabet denoting increasing level of toxicity (A or B) and a number denoting increasing flammability (1, 2 or 3).  That being said, a refrigerant labeled B3 according to this standard would imply high toxicity and flammability. This refrigerant, if used, would require additional consideration in mechanical system design.

On the topic of refrigerant safety, how important would refrigerant choice be in the car you drive every day?  The September 2010 ASHRAE Journal reported that American automaker General Motors will now use a new refrigerant HFO-1234yf as a replacement to HFC-134a. This will happen in all GM models beginning 2013.  As it turns out, refrigerant safety is a given here; the actual driver was not safety, but global warming potential.  It was reported that HFC-134a stays in the atmosphere for the whole of 13 years, but HFO-1234yf a mere 11 days.  Does this mean an immediate end to the pollutant? Not so fast according to the US based Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), which says HCF-134a is not going away anytime soon.  This is because HFO-1234yf is not a direct refrigerant replacement and HFC -134a will still be needed to service existing vehicles.

More importantly the US EPA still needs to certify it as non-toxic.  Therefore pending approval, you can rest assure your new GM 2013 car will be doing a good job protecting our planet.

By, Cameron Sherwood–  CTTC Refrigeration Chair, 2010-2011