MDC Advisor
July 2012
Volume 32
In This Issue
-- Fukushima - The Rest of
the Story

-- "Show Me" Superior Green Building Performance

-- Indoor Air Quality Modeling

-- Eastern Regional Business Conference

Upcoming Events
Indoor Air Quality Modeling Workshop, Philadelphia, PA 
July 24, 2012   
MDCSystems'® Mitch Swann, PE, will meet with other area practitioners at the Philadelphia Navy Yard on July 24, 2012, to attend a workshop and discuss the value of indoor air quality. IAQ is a key component of overall indoor environmental quality. Poor IAQ is linked to negative outcomes including lower productivity and higher rates of worker absenteeism, yet IAQ is often given much less thought in design than energy efficiency and operating costs.
Get More Info

Eastern Regional Business Matchmaking Conference, 
Philadelphia, PA  
July 25 , 2012 
MDCSystems'® Robert C. McCue, PE, and Mitch Swann, PE, are attending this exceptional business event at the Pennsylvania Convention Center on July 25th.
Business Matchmaking is presented by HP and Intel, Symantec, Dun & Bradstreet, Bank of America, Lockheed Martin, and Greatland, in cooperation with federal and state agencies and leading non-profit organizations. The Business Matchmaking Eastern Regional face-to-face event will welcome area entrepreneurs at the Pennsylvania Convention Center located in Philadelphia. Participating firms will be personally processed to prepare for meetings with key buyers from federal, state and local government agencies and major corporations.
Get More Info

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Paoli, PA 19301
Ph: 610.640.9600
Toll Free: 1.888.MDC.9977
Fax: 610.640.9609

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Ph: 44 (0) 20 8346 8455
Fax: 44 (0) 20 8371 8635


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Fukushima - The Rest of the Story 
By Robert C. McCue, PE
MDCSystems® Consulting Engineer

The complete Japanese investigation of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant disaster was recently released in a 641 page report (the “Official Report”) with the conclusion  that: “The accident was a man made disaster caused by poor regulation and collusion between the government, the operator and the industries watchdog." (The Guardian, 5 July 2012) 

As discussed in the April 2012 MDC Advisor, the multiple failures at the plant following the earthquake and tsunami revealed that safety systems and procedures common in U.S. nuclear plants were not employed by the operator, Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO), nor were they required by the Japanese regulators.
The serial failures of  the design, construction and regulation are summarized below: 

• Base elevation of Plants 1 thru 4 were lower than historical tsunami levels;

• Flawed concept of sharing power between plants (station black-out criteria);

• Only one diesel generator per plant (single failure criterion ignored);

• Diesel Generator and emergency switchgear located below flood level (emergency planning);

• Hydrogen vent valves inoperable due to lack of AC Power (single failure criteria and station black-out); and

•  Emergency planning and late/deficient response by TEPCO and the Japanese government in providing emergency/evacuation information and electrical power generation units to allow for the venting and cool-down of the units and the cooling of the spent fuel pools to avert additional releases of radioactive gases into the environment (emergency planning deficiencies).

Read More...   

I'm from Missouri - "Show Me" Superior
Green Building Performance 

By E. Mitchell Swann, PE, LEED
MDCSystems® Consulting Engineer
Well, actually I’m from Philadelphia - the home of good cheesesteaks and good lawyers (good engineers too!).  But for the sake of this article, I join a growing segment of design and construction industry experts who are figuratively from Missouri when it comes to building performance. 

Missouri is known as the “Show Me” state.  This means that you can’t just ‘talk the talk’ about some grand scheme or claim, you’ve got to ‘walk the walk’ – you’ve got to show me and prove it.  “Show me” is becoming the de jour response to claims of superior “performance” by green or high-performance buildings.  Owners, operators, tenants and even the design/construction community are looking for hard data and reliable metrics to verify claims of superior energy performance, low resource use, good indoor environmental quality and occupant comfort and satisfaction.  This is a good thing. 

Rating Systems, Design Guidance and Performance Measurement/Verification
Concomitant to the development of green building ratings systems such as LEED  (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and Green Globes , there has been a growth in both design guidance and performance measurement and verification of green building metrics so that buildings might be more readily ‘compared’ in terms of energy and resource use as described above.  There are also other comparative tools that are not related to any specific rating system but comparing your building to industry norms for similar building types.

Read More... 
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