Laboratory space emerges as one of the worst offenders in a energy and water intensive hospital, according to an article on the Healthcare Design website. When trying to make a lab greener, best practices start with downsizing wherever practical.
Fume hoods may provide one of the biggest opportunities for energy conservation within a lab environment, since they demand high air flow that may drive the overall HVAC sizing and energy requirements of the building, the article said.
In addition, according to a UC Irvine study, it’s also important to size cooling systems for heat generation from equipment and lighting. As with operating rooms, laboratories can be scheduled for reduced airflow or “setbacks” so that the unoccupied space (after hours, on weekends) can have reduced air flow when not in use. Some labs have 30 air exchanges per hour and can be reduced to less than 10 in off hours or when not in use.
Read the article.