Understanding Hazard, Exposure, and Risk in the Built Environment (Print Course)

This article will review basic concepts that could change how you look at materials and your materials specification processes. It begins with understanding the differences between hazard, exposure and risk or danger – the importance of considering product use and exposure and the limitations of using a hazard-only decision making process when selecting building materials. This article also will describe some tools, guidance and resources available for evaluating products and materials to help achieve both a high quality construction project, and one that is safe for building occupants. Finally, this article will provide information to help you use building materials safely.

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Thermal Bridging Solutions to Improve Building Envelope Performance

Thermal bridging is a big concern in the building industry, it has been recognized as a significant factor in building envelope heat loss. By reducing heat flow through a building’s thermal envelope we can reduce energy consumption as well as prevent potential condensation issues. Building codes have increased requirements of building enclosures requiring ‘continuous insulation’ without thermal bridging. Thermal break materials can be used to reduce heat loss in wall assemblies, transitions and structural connections throughout the building envelope. They can minimize building energy loss and improve building envelope performance.

This course will provide an overview to thermal bridging, discussing the reasons why it occurs as well as how it can be prevented. This course will also compare building details with and without thermal break solutions to highlight the importance of determining accurate values of thermal transmittance.

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Subfloor Construction Adhesives: Solvent Based, Water Based and Reactive - Why Weather and Substrates Can Cause a Reference Standard Alone to Miss the Mark (ONLINE course)

This course will look at the differences between construction adhesives based on their core chemical makeup. It will compare and contrast VOC regulations and restrictions for indoor air versus those for outdoor air. It will compare the most commonly referenced subfloor adhesive performance specifications, identify their similarities and differences, and point out how lab conditions can differ from “real world” field conditions. The course will finally look at podium construction and the challenges created for adhesives due to varying manufactured wood based substrates and due to VOC restrictions.

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Performance Fabrics in Sustainable Design

Windows, views, and openings in buildings present the classic battle between form and function. The designer naturally wants the building’s occupants to enjoy views and light, but the solar heat gain from these openings can wreak havoc on sustainable goals; however, sophisticated and high-performing solar control fabrics can help reconcile the form and function of light, views, and sustainability.

There are many solar control fabrics on the market; wading through them can be overwhelming. This course aims to help educate the designer about what performance fabrics are, the content of various fabrics, how they work, and the benefits to a sustainable design in meeting and maximizing your goals of occupant health, safety, wellbeing, and sustainability.

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Custom Water Feature Installed at St. Rita's Medical Facility

At St. Rita’s Regional Medical Center they incorporated a custom water feature in their healthcare facility that brings a soothing calmness to its visitors.

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Gundersen Health System's Journey to Energy Independence

In this course, you will learn how and why a major US Health Care System achieved benchmark performance in energy and environmental stewardship. Through examining the journey of Gundersen Health System, understand how to approach and balance a goal of energy independence that relies on both energy efficiency and renewable energy generation. Understand some of the tools available to get the job done, while being environmentally and fiscally responsible.

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Impact of Green Building on Cognitive Function and Health

This course will be broken into three portions. The first part will look at the existing state of knowledge on buildings and health. Next, it will move on to discuss measuring cognitive function. Finally, the course will wrap up by looking at the COGfx study and discuss it in a greater detail.

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Making Our Spaces Great for People and Bad for Pests

GreenPro is a pest management service standard recognized by USGBC. In 2015, GreenPro changed to allow pest management firms to submit their green pest management programs for certification. Attendees of this session will evaluate various pest management services for compliance with GreenPro (and thus eligibility for LEED credits). Attendees will leave this session with a greater understanding of the tasks performed and tools used by pest management professionals so that we can work with pest management professionals to make schools, offices, and homes great for people, but bad for pests.

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A Tribute to Performance Arrows - Improving Indoor Quality

This session invites you to think of an integrated approach that combines building performance with space aesthetics. By analyzing both qualitative and quantitative outcomes, we can optimize occupants’ multi-comfort in a new integrated design process. We will share results from a number of in-depth post-occupancy evaluations concluding with verified design strategies that improved IEQ in buildings.

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Sustainability and Window Materials 101: Choosing the Best Window Material to Achieve Sustainability Goals

Windows play a significant role in the function and comfort of a building, from providing natural light and ventilation, to adding architectural features. Windows also play a large part in the sustainability of a structure.
The most common factors when discussing the sustainability of windows are durability, energy efficiency, and resource efficiency. In this course, we look at the four most common window frame materials – vinyl, fiberglass, aluminum, and wood – and discuss the factors that contribute to sustainability for each of them. Finally, we look at the factors that contribute to the sustainability of window manufacturing operations.

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