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Building Sciences

In This Issue

Dates to Know

February 24-27, 2013
AAMA 76th Annual Conference
Tuscon, AZ

February 27, 2013
Green in the Military
Virginia Beach, VA

March 6-7, 2013
Philadelphia, PA

March 12-14, 2013
NFMT 2013
Baltimore, MD

March 14-19, 2013
RCI International Convention
Orlando, FL

March 15, 2013
2nd Annual bSa BIMSmart Summit
Waltham, MA

March 17-20, 2013
HVAC Excellence
Las Vegas, NV

March 20, 2013
STEM Webinar

March 20-22, 2013
Housing Opportunity 2013
Seattle, WA

April 2-4, 2013
IFMA Facility Fusion 2013 Conference & Expo
Los Angeles, CA

April 18-19, 2013
AIVC Airtightness Workshop
Washington, DC

April 21-30, 2013
ICC 2013 Committee Action Hearings/Group B Codes
Dallas, TX

April 22-24, 2013
WCOE's Women Build America Conference
Washington, DC

May 2-4, 2013
NEBB Annual Conference
Montreal, QC

May 5-9, 2013
World Building Congress
Queensland, Australia

May 6-8, 2013
2013 International Concrete Sustainability Conference
San Francisco, CA

May 6-8, 2013
2013 National Conference on Commissioning
Denver, CO

May 14, 2013
Consultative Council Meeting
Washington, DC

May 15, 2013
Coordinating Council Meeting
Washington, DC

May 16, 2013
Board of Directors Meeting
Washington, DC

June 10-13, 2013
NFPA Conference & Expo
Chicago, IL

June 20-22, 2013
2013 AIA Convention
Denver, CO

June 21-26, 2013
2013 ASME Annual Meeting
Indianapolis, IN

June 22-26, 2013
ASHRAE 2013 Annual Conference
Denver, CO

June 23-25, 2013
2013 BOMA International and the Every Building Conference & Expo
San Diego, CA

September 24, 2013
Consultative Council Meeting
Washington, DC

September 25, 2013
Coordinating Council Meeting
Washington, DC

September 25-27, 2013
World Energy Engineering Congress
Washington, DC

September 26, 2013
Board of Directors Meeting
Washington, DC

October 2-4, 2013
IFMA's World Workplace Conference & Expo
Philadelphia, PA

January 6-10, 2014
Building Innovation 2014
Washington, DC

The Journals

Journal of Building Information Modeling (JBIM)

Journal of Building Enclosure Design (JBED)

Journal of Advanced and High-Performance Materials (JMAT)

Journal of Hazard Mitigation and Risk Assessment (JHAZ)

What's On WBDG

In addition to the U.S. Department of Energy Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) e-learning courses already on the WBDG Whole Building Design Guide, FEMP has added seven ‘First Thursday’ seminars to the WBDG Continuing Education section. FEMP First Thursday seminars provide training for federal energy and environmental professionals. Leading experts address timely topics in 90-minute sessions. The seminars are approved for FEMP CEUs and they are being submitted for AIA LUs. After their initial live offering, new First Thursday seminars will be added regularly to the WBDG. See what’s available.


February 2013

The Institute in Action

Institute to Be Featured on Real Estate Radio Show

No matter where you live, natural hazards can have a serious impact on your family and your property. However, many homeowners are unaware of their risks or how to prepare for a disaster. To assist homeowners in the Washington, D.C., area, The Eric Stewart Show on WMAL (105.9 FM) will feature a segment on hazards and the importance of being prepared, which is scheduled to air next month.

Ryan Colker, Director of the Consultative Council and Presidential Advisor at the National Institute of Building Sciences recently served as a guest on the show. During his taped interview, the wide-ranging discussion covered a number of topics, including simple actions homeowners can take to reduce property damage, the role of building codes in providing minimum levels of protection, the role of hazard insurance and the importance of being prepared. In conjunction with the show, the Institute has developed a web page with resources specifically focused on homeowners (www.nibs.org/hometips).

The show will air Sunday, March 10, 2013, at 7:00 am, on WMAL (105.9 FM) and then be featured on the show’s webpage.

Plans Underway for Building Innovation 2014

Building Innovation 2014You won’t want to miss out on attending Building Innovation 2014 — The National Institute of Building Sciences second annual Conference and Expo, scheduled for January 6-10, 2014, in Washington, D.C. Not only will the Institute be celebrating 40 years of leadership and advocacy for the building industry, it will be presenting quality programming to explore solutions for Advancing Life-Cycle Performance. In response to the great turnout at Building Innovation 2013, the Institute is moving to a larger venue, the Marriott Washington at Wardman Park. The Institute will continue to deliver a wide variety of meetings, sessions and symposia, including the popular buildingSMART alliance™ Symposium, FEDCon® and the Building Enclosure Technology and Environment Council (BETEC) Symposium, and to present activities and information from each of its councils and committees. The larger venue will provide more session seating and space for exhibitors, while still offering attendees opportunities to earn CEUs and network with their colleagues and industry leaders. Sponsorships and exhibit spaces are available. Stay tuned for more information. Sign up to receive Conference updates.

Industry Leadership and Advocacy

NCGBCS Releases Taxonomy of Building Codes and Standards
Calls for Public Comment

The National Council of Governments on Building Codes and Standards (NCGBCS) is calling for public comment on the content of a new Code Taxonomy of building codes and standards. This compilation of codes and standards relating to the built environment is intended to serve as a resource when educating the industry, government and the public about the regulations and referenced documents that are used when constructing buildings and facilities. Code officials; codes and standards developers; federal, state and local agencies; architects, engineers and contractors; consumer advocates and others are all encouraged to provide input by the March 8th deadline. Download the draft document.

Security and Disaster Preparedness

DHS Publication on Design of Safe School Projects Available

BIPS 07The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has a publication on designing safe schools as part of its Building and Infrastructure Protection Series (BIPS). Entitled BIPS 07: Primer to Design Safe School Projects in Case of Terrorist Attacks and School Shootings, 2nd Edition, this manual is a revised and expanded version of FEMA 428. BIPS 07 provides the design community and school administrators with the basic principles and techniques to design a school that is safe from potential physical attacks, while, at the same time, offering an aesthetically pleasing design that is functional and meets the needs of the students, staff, administration and general public. This second edition of FEMA 428 focuses on the threats posed by physical attacks on a school by terrorists or targeted shootings. The manual is intended for use by schools that may be at risk of attack and is designed to meet the needs of all schools, including those with serious security concerns. Download a copy. Request a print publication.

A Recap of the Multihazard Mitigation Council Symposium

The Multihazard Mitigation Council (MMC) Symposium, which was held January 8th, during Building Innovation 2013 — The National Institute of Buildings Sciences Annual Conference and Expo, focused on Large-Scale Mitigation Planning and Strategies. More than 70 attendees participated in the event. Neil Blais, chair of the MMC, provides a recap of their activities.

“One of the major themes running though the discussions was that we needed to have a better way of measuring the resilience of our communities and the mitigation efforts being done throughout the country,” writes Blais in the recap.

Find out who spoke, what was discussed, and the plans underway for next year. Read the recap.

MMC Elects 2013 Board

The Multihazard Mitigation Council (MMC) elected its 2013 Board during its Annual Meeting, held January 7, 2013. The following MMC Board members were re-elected for a three-year term: Charles Scawthorn, SPA Risk LLC (Earthquake category); Mark Hankewycz, Protection Engineering Group (Security category); Mohammed Ettouney, Weidlinger Associates (Blast category); Jawhar Bouabid, Atkins (Software/Data category); and Adam Rose, University of Southern California (Economics category). Frank Lavelle, Applied Research Associates, was newly elected in the Wind category for a three-year term. See the full MMC Board.

Facility Performance and Sustainability

NFMT Show: Where you want to be for FMOC, WBDG and COBie!

NFMT 2013The National Facilities Management & Technology Show (NFMT), to be held March 12-14 at the Baltimore Convention Center, is a great place to learn the latest about facility management (FM) and operations and keep up with some related National Institute of Building Sciences activities, including the Facility Maintenance and Operations Committee (FMOC), Construction Operations Building information exchange (COBie) and WBDG Whole Building Design Guide. The FMOC meeting; 3 sessions on COBie; and a session on the WBDG will all take place at NFMT. And they are all for FREE for Institute members and associates to attend. See the list of sessions.

Free STEM Webinar: Develop the Industry’s Future Workforce
Program Serves to Get Students Interested in Building Sciences

Buildings of the future will include more technology and advanced materials than ever before. To ensure the building industry will have a workforce with the necessary skills to design, construct, operate and manage the high-performance buildings of the future, the Institute, Total Learning Research Institute (TLRI) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) are working together to bring building sciences into the classroom.

TLRI and NASA currently have an initiative called Mars City, which teaches science, technology, engineering and mathematics concepts in the context of conducting experiments on Mars. To expand the students’ learning experience to encompass building sciences, the Institute, TLRI an NASA are beginning to develop a Facility Operations Module for Mars City. The Institute will host a free webinar on March 20, 2013, at 2:00 pm ET, to update industry professionals interested in sponsoring this important educational tool. Register now.

Firm Up Your Knowledge of Concrete Sustainability

Attend the 2013 International Concrete Sustainability Conference, scheduled for May 6-8 in San Francisco, to get a firm hold on the topic of concrete. Hosted by the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association (NRMCA), a member of the National Institute of Building Sciences, this 8th annual conference will provide learning and networking opportunities on the latest advances, technical knowledge, continuing research, tools and solutions for sustainable concrete manufacturing and construction. The Institute is a co-sponsor of this event, which will be held at the Hotel Sofitel San Francisco Bay, located in Redwood City, Calif. Get more information.

DOE, GSA, HUD Call for Input on Proposed Rules, Reports and Programs

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), General Services Administration (GSA) and Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) have issued several requests for public input on proposed rules, reports and program development that may be of interest to the building community.

  • DOE: DOE has issued a Request for Information on the development of its commercial building energy asset score. The score provides information regarding the efficiency of a building’s major energy consuming systems and is intended to enable greater understanding of building performance and potential savings. DOE is developing this voluntary program as part of its effort to achieve a 20 percent improvement in the energy efficiency of commercial buildings by 2020. Comments are due by March 11, 2013. Read the Federal Register.

  • GSA: GSA has issued a Request for Information on its review and recommendation to the U.S. Secretary of Energy of a green building certification system(s) that is most likely to encourage a comprehensive and environmentally-sound approach to the certification of green federal buildings. Comments are due by April 5, 2013. Read the Federal Register.
  • HUD: HUD has issued a Request for Comment on the redesign of the American Housing Survey. Comments are due by April 2, 2013. Read the Federal Register.

BETEC, BEC-National Leadership

The Building Enclosure Technology and Environment Council (BETEC) Board of Direction elected new officers during its Annual Meeting, held January 8 at Building Innovation 2013. Robert Kistler, AIA, of The Façade Group, was newly elected chair; Judd Peterson of the Judd Allen Group, who chairs BEC-Minnesota, was newly elected vice chair; Stanley Gatland, of Certainteed Corporation, was re-elected secretary; and Richard Walker of the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) was re-elected financial officer.

Institute Chief Operating Officer Earle Kennett praised outgoing Chairman Wagdy Anis for moving BETEC from being research-oriented to a commercially-oriented focus. Anis initiated the BECs, started the Journal of Building Enclosure Design (JBED) and founded the Building Enclosure Science & Technology (BEST) Conference. Under Anis’ leadership, BETEC has been an extremely productive council of the Institute. After receiving a standing ovation, Anis said of the new chairman, “Rob Kistler will be a great chair, who will bring a lot of energy to the group.” Anis concluded that he is leaving BETEC in a good place.

In addition, the Building Enclosure Council (BEC)-National elected its 2013 officers before its Annual Meeting, also held January 8. Fiona Aldous will serve as chair; Whitney Okon will serve as vice chair; Justin Boone will serve as secretary (recently elected), and Brian Stroik, secretary. Kelly Pickard will continue to serve as the American Institute of Architects (AIA) liaison to the BECs; David Herron will continue as the BEC liaison to AIA. BEC “Founding Father” Wagdy Anis is the BETEC liaison. Aldus thanked the outgoing past chair, Rob Kistler, and the newly designated immediate past chair, Dave Altenhofen, for their service to BEC-National. See the full BETEC Board, and list of BEC Chairs.

Speaker Papers for Airtightness Workshop Due March 15

The National Institute of Building Sciences Building Enclosure Technology and Environment Council (BETEC); the Air Infiltration and Ventilation Centre (AIVC); and the TightVent Building and Ductwork Airtightness Platform issued a call for papers last month for the AIVC Airtightness Workshop/Third TightVent Workshop on Building and Ductwork Airtightness. Those presenters whose abstracts were selected for the event have a deadline of March 15 to submit papers.

With the theme Design, Implementation, Control and Durability: Feedback from Practice and Perspectives, the workshop will be held April 18-19, 2013, in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. The objectives of the workshop are to highlight the latest developments in sealing techniques; durability; test methods and analyses; and challenges and solutions for high-rise buildings, as well as programs and networking activities that address airtightness issues. Registration for the workshop is now open. Get more information.

Federal Agencies Working to Make Homes Healthier

On February 4, 2013, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) unveiled Advancing Healthy Housing — A Strategy for Action.

The initiative represents a bold new vision for addressing the nation’s health and economic burdens caused by preventable hazards associated with the home. The Strategy for Action encourages federal agencies to take preemptive actions that will help reduce the number of American homes with health and safety hazards. The vision of the federal agencies that developed the Strategy is to reduce the number of American homes with residential health and safety hazards through achievement of five goals and priority actions. Read the five goals.

Information Resources and Technologies


2013 BIMSmart Summit – March 15 in "The Watch City"

BIMSmart Summit

NBIMS-US 2021 Vision Task Force Established

The chairman of the planning committee responsible for the nation’s building information modeling standard has set up a workgroup to address the long term vision of the standard. In January, Chris Moor, chairman of the National BIM Standard-United States Planning Committee, established the 2021 Vision Task Force.

“Without a long term strategy and clearly defined goals and objectives, we are in danger of having organizational, schedule and content changes at every version of NBIMS-US,” said Chairman Moor. “Clearly this is not in the best interests of adoption of the standard.”

To avoid this, Moor proposed the new group would be tasked with developing a long-term vision for NBIMS-US. The task force, which will be in place for a period of one year, will report its findings at Building Innovation 2014. Read the charter. See the list of members.

Apply to Be a NIST Fellow

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is accepting applications for three fellows to be part of the White House’s Presidential Innovation Fellows (PIF) program. This high-profile program pairs top innovators from the private sector, non-profits and academia with top innovators in government to collaborate during six- to 12-month “tours-of-duty” that aim to save lives, save taxpayer money and fuel job creation. Fellows are funded by the sponsoring agencies. The PIF program, which began in 2012, is accepting applications for the second round of fellows. The NIST fellows will work on the Green Button Initiative and Cyber-Physical Systems. In addition, six other positions at different federal agencies are open this year, including one addressing Disaster Response & Recovery. Applications are due March 17, 2013.


The National Institute of Building Sciences, authorized by public law 93-383 in 1974, is a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization that brings together representatives of government, the professions, industry, labor and consumer interests to identify and resolve building process and facility performance problems. The Institute serves as an authoritative source of advice for both the private and public sectors with respect to the use of building science and technology.

An Authoritative Source of Innovative Solutions for the Built Environment
© 2013 National Institute of Building Sciences. All Rights Reserved. 
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