The U.S. Dept. of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colo., reached a milestone earlier in mid-January with topping out of the $135-million Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF).

Courtesy of JE Dunn Construction
NRELs 182,500-sq-ft Energy Systems Integration Facility is comprised of office space, a data center and a high-bay research laboratory.

Denver’s JE Dunn Construction is serving as general contractor on the project, in conjunction with architecture and engineering firm, SmithGroupJJR. Officials from DOE and NREL participated in the ceremony. 

The 182,500-sq-ft facility is comprised of three major components: office space, a data center and a high-bay research laboratory. The facility, which broke ground last spring, will accommodate 200 researchers and support staff, with 15 fully equipped laboratories once it is completed this fall.

Additionally, the building’s design features collaboration and visualization rooms and outdoor testing areas.
The ESIF will conduct integrated, megawatt-scale research and development of the components and strategies needed to safely move renewable-energy technologies onto the grid.

DOE and NREL expect it to become a partnering facility for major utilities in developing and testing complex devices, systems and concepts using a controlled, integrated-energy system platform required to transform the energy system. 
The start-of-the-art facility is expected to achieve, at minimum, LEED-Gold certification, with an efficient building design that includes energy-saving features such as natural ventilation through operable windows, daylighting, open air cubicles and radiant heating and cooling.

Construction Facts
(to date)

• 358 piers placed

• 9,533 cu yd or 19,304 tons of concrete placed

• 642 tons of concrete reinforcing bar 

• Approximately 900 pieces of precast concrete erected

• Approximately 600 tons of structural steel erected

• 90% of construction waste diverted from landfills

• 150,000 construction man-hours worked through January 6