The fume hood is arguably the single most important safety feature in laboratories. They are also one of the biggest energy users and can be known to use three and a half times more energy annually than the average American house.
Ron Blanchard, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
For safety reasons these devices cannot be eliminated from the lab however there are energy optimization strategies that can reduce their environmental impact and also enhance performance.
By analyzing a number of our recent projects, discussions with fume hood manufacturers and a review of published research on fume hood energy reduction, this paper provides the various strategies and choices available to optimize fume hood energy performance. A fume hood flow chart was developed from this investigation, which walks through the decision points to consider when selecting fume hoods for a project and covers the range of strategies currently available.