AEC Tech News #169

14 Jun, 2006 By: Kenneth Wong

In Search of Sustainable Certification Processes: Architect reflects on certification and construction inspections and the need for more education

In Search of Sustainable Certification Processes

Architect reflects on certification and construction inspections and the need for more education in residential sustainability

Lawrence Scarpa is probably one of the few people in California who looks forward to opening his electricity bill. He uses about 330 kW (kilowatts) a year -- less than the 548 kW that the average California household reportedly uses each month (according to the Energy Information Administration's statistics for 1999). Like most of us, Scarpa chills his meat and milk in a refrigerator, washes his clothes in a washer and does his dishes in a dishwasher. So, what’s his secret? It’s his house, outfitted with a solar canopy that generates about 5,500 kW of renewable energy a year.

Under the Umbrella
Completed in April 2005, Scarpa’s two-story building in Venice, California, has become something of an attraction. Scarpa calls his dwelling The Solar Umbrella House, a tribute to Paul Rudolph’s Umbrella House of 1953 that served as inspiration. The AIA/COTE (American Institute of Architects/Committee on the Environment) named it one of 2006’s Top Ten Green projects. In the online project-profile page, AIA observes, “Rather than deflecting sunlight, this contemporary solar canopy uses 89 amorphous photovoltaic panels to transform the sunlight into usable energy, providing 95% of the residence’s electricity. At the same time, it screens large portions of the structure from direct exposure to the intense southern California sun, protecting the body of the building from thermal heat gain.” Read more>>

First Look Review: ATI FireGL V7350 1GB RAM Graphics Card

by Ron LaFon

ATI Technologies just released two new products in its FireGL line of graphics cards: the V7300 and the V7350. Both are listed as ultrahigh-performance cards. The primary difference between the two is that the FireGL V7300 comes with 512MB of memory while the V7350, which I tested, provides 1GB of onboard GDDR3 (graphics double data rate, v3) memory. The V7350 is the first readily available graphics card to offer that much base memory.

A double-width graphics card, the FireGL V7350 requires an additional slot space when installed to accommodate its thickness. Both the V7300 and the V7350 include two dual-link DVI-I output connectors. They support single 9-megapixel monitors at a resolution of 3840×2400 or dual-display output at 2560×1600 per screen. The V7350 also supports the 16-bit per color component of HDR (high dynamic range) display. Read more>>

Mark Your Calendar: AEC Events

Webinars: Large-Format Scanning and Document Management
Tuesdays and Thursdays in June
IDEAL is offering Web presentations to discuss topics, introduce technology and provide suggestions to help with large-format scanning and document management problems. Read more 

2006 Design-Build Conference & Expo
October 18-20, 2006
Nashville, Tennessee
Annual conference for DBIA (Design-Build Institute of America) members and partners. Read more 

Fall International IAI Meeting for Building Smart
October 30-November 4, 2006
Washington, D.C.
IAI (International Alliance for Interoperability) is promoting effective means of exchanging information among all software platforms and applications serving the AEC/FM community. Read more

Trimble Dimensions 2006
November 6-8, 2006
Las Vegas, Nevada
Trimble’s International User Conference on Building Your Connected Site emphasizes how process integration and intelligent positioning technologies enable surveying, engineering and construction professionals to reduce rework, utilize assets more efficiently, accelerate design updates as well as improve the bidding, planning and billing cycles. Read more

COFES 2007
April 12-15, 2007
Scottsdale, Arizona
COFES 2007 brings together executives from technology, engineering, design, development and architectural companies to explore new engineering technology and discuss its effects on the future of business. Read more

For Cadalyst's full calendar of events, click here >>

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