Trends in modern lab design
continued from page 11
100 fc at the benchtop—65 is often adequate in
many labs.” So, the new focus is on finding the
most efficient combination of task lighting and
In order to provide an effective and efficient
solution, most lab design firms provide ambient
(direct/indirect) lighting combined with task
lighting at the bench. This approach is a logical
means of balancing energy efficiency and visual
acuity, as well as the increased emphasis on
effective daylighting and the control systems
necessary to realize these efficiencies.
Firms have seen an increase in LED light
usage. “Higher light levels can be maintained
at the benches by task lighting, while ambient
light in the general lab space can be kept at a
lower level, which results in significant savings compared to the standards of lighting an
entire lab at a high fc level,” says Li. Task lights
have been moving in the LED direction for a
while, and now general overhead lighting as
well. While LED is still slightly more expensive
upfront than a T5 fluorescent fixture, it’s ultimately more efficient. Fixtures are now available from manufacturers that provide quality
LED lighting with longevity.
There is also an increase in the use of pendant lights for uplighting, which is reflected off
ceiling panels above to provide diffused light
to the lab space below. Some of these lighting
systems are integrated with HVAC components,
such as chilled beams.
A COLLABORATIVE SOLUTION
Collaboration is the key to today’s science. It’s
also accelerated by younger scientists coming
from more contemporary academic models
where students problem solve in team environments. Research labs are designed to accommodate different types of work within the same
lab, as evidenced by fields like biochemistry,
biophysics and geochemistry. Academic labs are
now interdisciplinary and rarely designed solely
for one discipline. To some extent, the degree
that collaborative environments are designed
into labs is culturally driven—determined by
the specific company culture and the types of
work done. But overall, the trend is toward
more collaborative and less private space.
While the buzz today is about collaboration,
scientists also need to focus; and lab designers can’t
ignore this essential need. Some labs are noisy and
dynamic, and researchers feel free to collaborate
right at the bench. “In that case, quiet rooms for
specific meetings and quiet desk areas near, but
away from the lab are the appropriate counterpart,”
says June Hanely, VP and principal lab planner,
; CRB WELCOMES CHRIS ERTL TO S&T TEAM
CRB has welcomed Chris Ertl to the S&T team as senior lab planner for the Midwest
region. Ertl will be located in CRB’s Kansas City headquarters office with intent to
help grow and develop the S&T architectural initiative at CRB. Ertl brings over 18
years of professional expertise that includes lab planning and programming, architecture and project management.
;JEANNE QIU JOINS ST. LOUIS OFFICE OF HOK
Jeanne Qiu, AIA, CDT, LEED AP, joins the St. Louis office of HOK as a lab planner in
the S&T practice. Qiu will plan, program and design lab spaces for university and
corporate clients. She is currently working on the King Abdullah Univ. of Science
and Technology (KAUST) lab design in Thuwal, Saudi Arabia, and office and lab
space for BioGenerator in the CORTEX district in St. Louis. Qiu earned her Master of
Architecture from Washington Univ. in 1992 and her Bachelor of Science in Architecture from Southeastern Univ. in Nanjing, China, in 1988.
;ISP OPENS NEW LOCATION
Integrated Project Services Inc. (ISP), a full-service engineering, construction, commissioning and qualification firm dedicated to helping clients succeed with capital
projects and optimizing operations, announced the expansion of operations with
the opening of a new IPS location in Irvine, Calif.
;EMD MILLIPORE ANNOUNCES NEW CEO
EMD Millipore has announced the appointment of Udit Batra, PhD, as its incoming
President and CEO, responsible for the organization’s strategic direction to drive
growth and product innovation, as well as oversight of the worldwide operations.
Dr. Batra has assumed leadership effective May 15, 2014, and is based at the company’s U.S. headquarters in Massachusetts. Batra comes to EMD Millipore from the
Consumer Health Div. of Merck KGaA, where he successfully grew the business in
established and emerging markets.
; LAS PROMOTES JOHN KISNER
Lord Aeck Sargent (LAS) has promoted John Kisner, AIA, LEED AP, director of the
firm’s Texas office, to a principal of the architecture and planning firm. Kisner joined
LAS in 2008, relocated from Atlanta in late 2011 to become associate director of
the Austin office when the firm acquired the assets of TWC Architects, and became
office director in 2013. He attended Rice Univ., where he earned his masters degree
in architecture, has lived and worked in Houston, and has worked for LAS on several renovation projects at the Univ. of Houston.
;SMITHGROUPJJR NAMES TIM TRACEY AS DIRECTOR OF CHICAGO OFFICE
SmithGroupJJR has named Tim Tracey, AIA, as director of its Chicago office. He was
previously the office’s design director. Tracey will focus on strengthening the office’s
holistic and integrated design process while continuing to lead its reputation as an
award-winning firm. He takes over leadership of the 60-person office from Andy
Vazzano, who now resumes his focus on the firm’s S&T practice.
HDR Architecture. “In other places, the lab is a
quiet place for people to do focused work, and the
collaborative areas need to happen outside.”
Small discussion/conference areas are placed in
immediate proximity to lab areas, creating ease of
motion from one zone to another, thereby foster-
ing spontaneous collaboration. Writing surfaces
are important within these spaces, and interior
glass windows often function as writing surfaces.
There is also a trend away from programmed
“huddle spaces” along corridors and toward
more general-purpose amenities like coffee bars.
Research on the sociology of buildings indicates
that people gravitate to the interaction spaces
they prefer; so firms favor providing a wide variety of spaces to encourage social activity.
Lindsay Hock is Managing Editor of Laboratory
Design and R&D magazines.