Zac Bloom of Competitive Energy Systems speaks on Energy Procurement Strategies

Zac Bloom of Competitive Energy Systems speaks on Energy Procurement Strategies

In the third talk of our fall lecture series, BCT alumnus Zac Bloom, spoke about Designing Energy Procurement Strategies. Zac, who is Director of Sustainability and Renewables at Competitive Energy Systems (CES), was intricately involved in many energy projects including the recently installed UMass 5 MW solar array. In his talk, he gave us a broad and eloquent overview of the many factors that influence energy purchasing and systems selection. Synopsis Mr. Bloom originally joined Competitive Energy Systems (CES) in 2012 as a Business Development and Account Manager and was soon promoted to Director of Sustainability & Renewables. Now CES's Vice President, Head of Renewables & Sustainability, Mr. Bloom primarily consults with universities and large commercial customers on energy procurement strategies, budgeting, sustainability, energy benchmarking and CES’s proprietary Utility Tracker. Prior to joining CES, at UMass Amherst, Mr. Bloom focused his studies on energy benchmarking and data visualizations for large data sets associated with building’s resource consumption profiles. Links Presentation slides Competitive Energy Systems UMass Solar Projects ...
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Jonathan Wright of Wright Builders speaks about their Living Building Challenge projects

Jonathan Wright of Wright Builders speaks about their Living Building Challenge projects

In the second BCT lecture of the fall season, Jonathan Wright of Wright Builders spoke about "Building at the Edge of Sustainability" as exemplified in their various Living Building Challenge projects. In his engaging talk, he outlined the process behind the Kern Center at Hampshire College and various other buildings and also provided an outlook for the future of sustainable construction. Synopsis Mr. Wright, a graduate of Hampshire College, has been an active regional leader in sustainable design and construction since 1976. The firm he co-owns, Wright Builders, Inc., recently completed two Living Building Challenge projects (R.W. Kern Center & Hitchcock Center for the Environment) achieving the highest standard of renewable and resilient design and construction. His upcoming book Spirit of the Makers will be published by Ecotone Press in 2019. His journalism has spanned several decades, and in 2018 his poetry and photograph collection Season of Dreams joined the 2014 poetry collection, After the Rain. Links Presentation slides Wright Builders Living Building Challenge ...
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Marc Rivard of WoodWorks presents on new opportunities in MassTimber

Marc Rivard of WoodWorks presents on new opportunities in MassTimber

The first talk of our Fall 2018 BCT Lecture Series was given by Marc Rivard from WoodWorks. He outlined the many technological possibilities that exist with new wood-based building materials such as cross-laminated timber, nail-laminated timber, and various others, many of which have been used in the construction of the Olver Design Building at UMass. Synopsis Mr. Rivard is Regional Manager at WoodWorks, an initiative of the Wood Products Council providing free project assistance as well as education and resources related to the design of non-residential wood buildings. Mr. Rivard’s background in Structural Engineering with 15 years of relevant design experience using all of the major building materials, allows him to provide practical and cost effective solutions for Architects and Engineers. Links Presentation Slides WoodWorks - Wood Products Council ...
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Associated General Contractors of Massachusetts Creates Endowment for BCT Program at UMass

Associated General Contractors of Massachusetts Creates Endowment for BCT Program at UMass

May 18, 2018 AMHERST, Mass. – The University of Massachusetts Amherst has received a $100,000 gift from the Associated General Contractors of Massachusetts (AGC MA) of Wellesley, Massachusetts. The gift, also made possible through the Construction Industry Association of Western Massachusetts in Springfield, will provide support for the building and construction technology (BCT) program and its students. The BCT program is part of the department of environmental conservation in the College of Natural Sciences. AGC MA is the state’s leading commercial construction association. The gift represents the second endowment dedicated to supporting UMass Amherst’s BCT program. In addition to providing financial support for BCT’s programs, the gift will make it possible for four students a year to receive scholarships. The BCT program prepares students for careers in construction management, sustainable building systems, and building materials technology. BCT offers undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as continuing education programs. The program is located in the new John W. Olver Design Building, a distinctive architectural...
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Mockups Help Students Understand Building Technologies

Mockups Help Students Understand Building Technologies

June 25, 2018 Inside the John W. Olver Design Building–itself a teaching tool for builders and architects–the Building and Construction Technology program (BCT) has built eight movable, full-scale mockups of building assemblies to help students see how modern building components go together in the real world. At home in front of a class or wheeled into public view in the Olver atrium, the mockups display the complexity of roofs, walls, windows and floors, and the intricacies, sequences and attachment methods the multiple layers of these assemblies require. Current building technology, whether commercial or residential, has grown more complex under the demands of climate change and energy costs, and it is critical to understand how each component of a building’s “envelope” responds to the physics of heat, liquid water, water vapor and air. The mockups reveal each layer in cutaway with adjacent QR codes to supply more detailed information. The mockups were built by BCT lecturer L. Carl Fiocchi in collaboration with student Alexander Okscin,...
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