The 13th Canadian Conference on Building Science & Technology

Keynote Speakers

Dr. John F. Straube is a professor of building science in the Civil Engineering Department and School of Architecture at the University of Waterloo, Canada and a principal of Building Science Corporation.

Dr. Straube has acted as an educator, researcher, consultant and expert witness on energy efficiency, rain penetration control, durability and IAQ. Current interests include the optimal system design of buildings, sustainable buildings, integration of HVAC with high-performance enclosures, and moisture problem avoidance. 

Below is the abstract of Dr. Straube's keynote presentation.

Title: Local and global trends, and how they affect building science.

Major changes are occuring, and likely to occur, in environmental concerns and resource use on a global scale. As building and maintaining the built environment consumes more natural resources than any other human activity, it is increasingly becoming the focus of national policy. The tremendous changes in the less developed world (tremendous growth in affluence and urban populations) are having an influence on energy and resource costs, and will continue to in the future. In the developed world, society needs to repair, upgrade, and retrofit a large proportion of existing buildings. All of this means that building science will be called upon to help deliver buildings that are increasingly resource and energy efficient, and tools and techniques to alter existing buildings, all within the constraints of heightened durability and indoor air quality concerns. This is a challenge of unprecedented scale, and will require increased resources in research and development, and tremendous expansion in training, and a re-evaluation of how design professionals practise. 

Mr. Thomas Auer is trained as a Process Engineer at the Technical University in Stuttgart, Germany.  He is a partner and managing director of Transsolar GmbH, a German engineering firm specializing in energy efficient building design and environmental quality with offices in Stuttgart, Munich and New York.

Thomas has collaborated with world known architecture firms on numerous international design projects and competitions.  Thomas is a specialist in the fields of integrated building systems and energy efficiency in buildings and has developed energy and building service concepts for projects around the world noted for their innovative design and energy performance. His concepts are an integral part of signature architecture. Among his projects in Germany are the Hochtief Prisma naturally-ventilated atrium building in Frankfurt, the new spa in Bad Aibling, and the KfW Westarkade in Frankfurt.  The Transsolar-designed office tower for Manitoba Hydro in downtown Winnipeg, Canada is considered one of the most energy efficient high rise office-buildings in North America and any cold climate in the world. Thomas also developed strategies for carbon neutral urban developments such as the Toronto Lower Don development.

Outside of Transsolar, Thomas is currently teaching at the Yale University School of Architecture, UCLA, and at the ESA in Paris.