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AMCA Holds Inaugural U.S. Air System Engineering and Technology Conference

March 21, 2018
The technical program was divided into two tracks — Air-Systems Design and Air Products & Technologies.

The Air Movement and Control Association International welcomed 90 consulting and application engineers, HVAC technicians, code officials, and product designers to San Antonio, March 6-7 for the inaugural Air System Engineering and Technology Conference-US (ASET-US).

Held at the Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk hotel, ASET-US kicked off with a luncheon featuring renowned commissioning and training expert and 2017 recipient of the Building Commissioning Association's Benner Award David Sellers, PE, senior engineer at Facility Dynamics Engineering, who shared invaluable lessons commissioning has taught him about mentoring and building design.

The technical program was divided into two tracks — Air-Systems Design and Air Products & Technologies — with attendees free to attend sessions across tracks. ASET-US attendees had the opportunity to earn up to seven professional-development hours.

Sessions in the Air-Systems Design track included:

• Stephen Wiggins, PE, associate partner at Newcomb & Boyd, discussed ways to cost-effectively reduce static pressure, system leakage and energy waste in existing air systems.

• Dan Int-Hout, chief engineer at Krueger, explained how to design overhead air-distribution systems that meet the requirements of ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 55, Thermal Environmental Conditions for Human Occupancy; ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62.1, Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality; and ANSI/ASHRAE/IES 90.1, Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings.

• Jeff Boldt, PE, LEED AP, HBDP, principal and director of innovation and quality at IMEG Corp., shared ways to attain and document compliance with fan energy requirements in ANSI/ASHRAE/IES 90.1 and the International Energy Conservation Code.

• Steven T. Taylor, PE, principal of Taylor Engineering, provided expert tips for the design of variable-air-volume ducted air systems.

• Ron Wroblewski, PE, president of Productive Energy Solutions, provided expert guidance on assessing fan performance in the field and troubleshooting fans.

• Michael Ivanovich, senior director of industry relations, and Josh Parent, associate director-technical advisor, both of AMCA International, discussed the AMCA Certified Ratings Program and how to properly specify AMCA-certified products in construction documents.

Of note in the Air Products & Technologies track are:

• Mike Wolf, PE, director of regulatory business development at Greenheck, discussed sizing and selection of axial and centrifugal fans and explained the new Fan Energy Index metric.

• Bill Koffel, PE, FSPE, president of Koffel Associates, discussed the impact of compartmentalization requirements on fire- and smoke-damper design and testing.

• Jim Smardo, director of louvers and architectural systems at Ruskin, discussed sizing, selection and specification of rain- and hurricane-resistant louvers.

• Trinity Persful, vice president of marketing at Twin City Fan & Blower, discussed advances in motor, variable-speed-drive, and belt technologies and the newly published ANSI/AMCA Standard 208, Calculation of the Fan Energy Index.

• John Sofra, U.S. markets manager-airflow, industrial, environmental at Kinetics Noise Control, discussed noise and vibration attenuation in commercial air systems.

• Mark Bublitz, vice president of engineering, and David Maletich, director of marketing, both at New York Blower, provided expert tips on minimizing system effect.

"ASET-US provided an excellent venue for our staff to be exposed not only to air-system and fan fundamentals, but the greater expanse of air-system design," said Bublitz, who co-chaired the event with Ivanovich. "Working for a fan manufacturer, we rarely have an opportunity to become exposed to air-system design 'beyond the fan.' ASET-US assembled interesting speakers who are deeply knowledgeable about a variety of air-system components and abreast of current events, such as energy-efficiency regulation.

“David Sellers' plenary talk was superbly crafted and delivered. We learned much and really enjoyed learning. The experience exceeded our expectations and delivered more than the typical 'technical conference.' Kudos to Michael Ivanovich, [AMCA Meeting Manager] Janet Blanchfield and all the AMCA staff who made this event a successful one.”

The launch of ASET-US followed that of the successful ASET-Europe, held Feb. 20 in Lyon, France.

"AMCA International, which truly is a global organization, launched ASET in two regions — Europe and the U.S. — two weeks apart," Ivanovich said. "At both events, thought leaders and veteran engineers delivered exceptionally detailed and useful instruction on topics vital to the air-systems industry. We look forward to doing these events again and expanding ASET to Asia and the Middle East."