Building Statistics         



Interdisciplinary Science & Engineering Building

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Building Name: Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Building

Location: University of Delaware/Newark, DE 19716

Site: On the corner of Lovett Ave. and Academy Street.

Occupancy Type: Classroom/Office/Lab

Size: 194,000 SF

Floors: 5 floors above grade (4 occupiable, 1 mechanical penthouse)

             1 floor below grade (Mechanical rooms)

Project Team:


University of Delaware


Ayers Saint Gross Architects and Planners


Mueller and Associates


Thornton Tomasett

Civil Engineer:

Rummel Klepper & Khal

Lab Consultant:

Research Facilities Design
Stormwater Management:

Biohabitats, Inc

Dates Start:  Spring 2011

Date Finish: Fall 2013

Project Budget: $140M

Construction Budget: $105M

Project Delivery Method: Design-Bid-Build
Codes: IBC 2003
Information under request.

Historical Requirements: None

                           Enthalpy Wheel


                   Photocell-Based Sensor

           Steel Pedestrian Bridge shown below

     Structural Skeleton  (Looking SW) struct

Building Enclosure

Architecture: The University of Delaware’s goal on this project was to create a building that would allow the research that was going on in their labs to be directly connected to the curriculum taught in their classrooms so that the students may learn through real life problems. ISEB will bring together physics, biology, and chemistry and push their students to solve today’s energy based problems. This required a unique building, one that would sustain both the classroom and lab environments.

    To delineate the two uses, the architect divided the building into two wings: An east (research) wing and a west (teaching) wing. These wings are joined together by a bridged walkway to maintain that bond between the classroom and research. The architect has meshed together brick, stone and glass to give an organic feel to a cutting edge building. The buildings day lighting, solar panels, and some rooftop vegetation give a hint to a passer by or an occupant that this building is one in which today’s energy issues will be at the forefront.

Facade: The architect has incorporated many different materials and wall systems to give the building an organic feel and demonstrate its many uses. At the core of the building are the classrooms and laboratories which can be identified by the red brick veneer. The interior spaces such as the offices, cafeteria, group study areas, and open offices have a more open feel and can be identified by the many different types of glass, stone, and metal wall assemblies. In total, the wall facades for this building include brick veneer, aluminum curtain wall, stone rain screen, insulated metal panel wall, and a non operable aluminum window system.

Rooftop: ISEB has many setbacks in its floors which creates multiple rooftops. The lowest of which is the roof over the cafeteria/dining area which the architect has chosen to cover with vegetation. The vegetation roof consists of the fallowing materials from bottom to top: concrete slab, rigid insulation, moisture retention mat, drainage board with aggregate, growing medium. Another predominant feature of the ISEB roof is a monitor roof which provides daylight to all of the floors below except the first floor. This monitor roof is the base for a collection of photovoltaic panels. Most of the other roofing is a fully adhered roof membrane over tapered insulation. The unsightly rooftop mechanical equipment is surrounded by a metal mesh roof equipment screen.


            Not only does ISEB have the usual pressure of incorporating sustainability into its design that most buildings being build today face but the goal of this building is to create an environment in which topics researched in the labs may be carried over into the classroom, one of which is renewable energy. This building starts on the outside with its green roof and photovoltaic solar panels which help to meet the stringent demands of a lab facility. Day lighting is abundant throughout the building through its many window panel systems and the monitor roof. There are also metal mesh screens that allow daylight in but cut down on direct sunlight.

              The sustainability theme is then carried inside to the guts of the building. The labs require 100% outside air so these AHU’s incorporate forms of energy recovery, either enthalpy wheels or heat pipes, depending on the space requirements. Variable frequency drive pumps are used in the hydronic systems and fluid coolers on the roof take advantage of cool winter temps when there are winter cooling loads in the building.      

Mechanical System

The building receives steam and chilled water from the Campus Utilities Plant (CUP). The steam is converted to hot water in a steam-to-water heat exchanger, which provides the buildings heating requirements. Chilled water, from the University of Delaware’s campus chilled water plant, is fed to a water-to-water flat plate heat exchanger that meets the buildings chilled water needs. An electric drive stand-by chiller is on site, in the basement mechanical room, and consists of 6 modules each sized at 50 tons (two of which incorporate hot gas bypass).Two fluid coolers with a nominal cooling capacity of 240 tons are on site to provide to reject heat from the standby chiller if the heating/reheat loops do not need it.

There are 10 total AHU’s serving the building that are located in the fifth floor mechanical penthouses. Each of these seven AHU’s fall into one of two system types, either recirculating or 100 percent outdoor air. Air handling units 1, 2, & 10 are of the recirculating air system type. They serve the builds classrooms, offices, common spaces, and corridors. Pressure independent, Variable Air Volume (VAV) terminal units will be provided for each temperature control zone of the system.

The other seven AHU’s (3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, & 9) are the 100% outdoor air units that serve the builds cleanroom, research, and instructional labs. These seven 100% outdoor air units all contain some form of energy recovery. Enthalpy wheels are used for spaces in which contamination of the supply air from the exhaust air is not critical and heat pipes for the units in which supply air contamination can not be risked (with the exception of AHU 9 which handles the clean room make-up air and has no energy recovery).


Medium voltage (34.5 kV) power is supplied from the East Campus Utilities Plant. This power is supplied via two primary service entrance feeders which serve a dual primary-secondary indoor double-ended unit substation. Selection of either 35kV service feeder is switched by medium voltage fused switches on either end of the substation. The substation transformers are rated at 1500/1995 kVA. Power is then distributed throughout the building at 480/277 volts. Step-down transformers and panels are located throughout the building in dedicated electrical rooms on each floor.


The majority of the lighting will be provided by energy efficient fluorescent lamps. Spaces with high ceilings, like lobbies and commons areas, will utilize ceramic metal halide and LED lamps. Tungsten-halogen sources are used where accent lighting is required. Daylight harvesting will be provided for spaces with abundant natural light. This is an energy savings measure and will include photocell-based control of the spaces lighting fixtures. The labs and clean room require elimination of Ultra Violet light contributions from the lighting fixture therefore the lighting fixtures in these spaces will implement filtered lenses or lamp sleeves.


The lateral system for ISEB is a reinforced concrete shear wall design, consisting of a total of 11 shear walls. The gravity system is a mixed type, consisting of two-way slabs with edge beams, flat plate, one-way slabs and joists. The majority of the slabs are 12" two-way slabs with either 12" or 8" drop panels. Beam size range from 48x52 to 18x32. Concrete columns from the basement to the fourth floor are primarily 24"x24" with some 36"x18" opposite the shear walls. The fifth floor penthouse is supported by w12x40 steel beams. The foundation system consists of mirco-piles, with the basement slab elevation at approximately two feet below the water table. Strict vibration control is needed for imaging suites and laboratories (33-2,000 micro inches per second). Another distinguishing feature of this building is the pedestrian bridge joining the research and classroom wings which is a structural steel design. This steel design consists of W21 girders, L6x6 & W2+Bent Plates spanning the girders, and a 6 1/2" composite deck and slab. The Monitor roof is framed with W12x26's and HSS8x4's.

The vast size (194,000 S.F.) and importance of this building requires precise planning and coordination which is why the owner decided to use the design-bid-build project delivery method. The design process was completed in September 2010 and construction is scheduled for completion in 2013. The project budget is $140M, with $105M of this going to construction budget.

Telecom Systems

Telecommunications service are extended to the building from the existing
campus system. Telecom service entrance ductbank are terminate in the main telecom/NSS room in the basement. A system of interconnecting conduits is provided between the main telecommunications room and vertically stacked telecommunications rooms on each floor of the building.
Telecom room receptacles are fed from emergency (standby) power.


There are a total of four stairways going from the 1st to 4th floors of the building. These stairs are located on the ends of each building wing. Three elevators move occupants from the 1st to 4th floors. There is one for each end of the building and one in the middle of the building near the bridge.

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                                                                                                                        This page was last updated: 9/3/10 by Johnathan Peno and is hosted by the PSU AE department c 2010

                                                                                                                Note: While great efforts have been taken to provide accurate and complete information on the pages of CPEP, please
                                                                                                                be aware that the information contained herewith is considered a work‐inprogress for this thesis project. Modifications
                                                                                                                and changes related to the original building designs and construction methodologies for this senior thesis project are
                                                                                                                solely the interpretation of Johnathan Peno. Changes and discrepancies in no way imply that the original design
                                                                                                                contained errors or was flawed. Differing assumptions, code references,requirements, and methodologies have been
                                                                                                                incorporated into this thesis project; therefore, investigation results may vary from the original design.