Chemistry 1973

Chemistry 1973 –
Century Bond

231 South 34th Street


Planning Strategy:
The Chemistry 1973 building was the first building to complete a comprehensive mechanical and lighting systems renovation under Penn's Century Bond program. This building was a leading candidate for renovation, as a substantial amount of the building is dedicated to research work impacted by the HVAC system. The existing inefficient system did not meet requested occupant comfort levels and did not maintain consistent required laboratory temperatures. Lighting systems, utilizing energy inefficient T12 fluorescent bulbs were obsolete and lacked controls such as occupancy sensors.

The Chem '73 HVAC renovations converted the ventilation controls from a constant to a variable air volume system, automatically adjusting the amount of fresh air brought in to the building according to the level of occupancy. New efficient air handler units were installed, as were automated Phoenix supply and exhaust valves throughout building and at fume hoods to deliver the precise amount of air flow necessary for occupancy comfort and research needs. New rooftop exhaust fans were installed with redundant capacity and variable frequency drives, which are tuned to the rest of the building airflow controls.

Inefficient T12 fluorescent lighting fixtures were replaced with new T8 fixtures, reducing the number of lamps by 70% and lowering the wattage of each lamp from 40 watts to 28 watts. Additional electrical savings were realized by incorporating occupancy and vacancy sensors throughout the building.

Total Project Cost:

120,000 sq ft

September 2014

AHA Consulting Engineers with Kris Kolo and Keast & Hood

Related Links:
Chemistry Library Chem 1973 Wing
Penn Chemistry: Chem 1973
Century Bond Projects