Prairie View A&M University

BEAM Instrument

Turntable installation puts a new spin on building envelope research

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The Project

The Building, Envelope, Assembly & Material research (BEAM) Instrument at Prairie View A&M University researches the effects of building envelope design and energy use. This learning modular instrument is an addition to the existing Architectural Fabrication Center.

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The Methodology

The BEAM Instrument is comprised of two identical Experimental Modules made from metal panels and an insulation structural composite. The facility was built on an articulated turntable custom made for the project.

The Result

The BEAM Instrument will give students the ability to observe various sun angles and simulate their effects on the building envelope. Students can observe the rotating movement of the two modules and evaluate the eff ects of outdoor environmental and solar exposure on full-scale conditioned spaces. Each module provides a strictly controlled insulated building envelope to accommodate variable shading devices, exterior wall systems, HVAC systems, or interior lighting designs at any site orientation for long-duration performance studies.

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