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Obermeier and BCxA Coordinate Unisphere Tour
Posted 2024-02-27 by Kari Donovan in Announcements

Stephen Obermeier, PrecisCx Senior CQV Engineer and Building Commissioning Association (BCxA) Mid-Atlantic Chapter President, recently assisted the board with a member event. On 22 February 2024, over 20 attendees toured the United Therapeutics Unisphere Building in Silver Spring, Maryland, and participated in conversation with the company’s founder.

The group witnessed firsthand the energy efficient and sustainable features of the Unisphere, including 3,000 solar panels that produce over 1 MW of energy, 52 geothermal wells that required changing Maryland law to install, a hybrid HVAC system that utilizes chilled beams and actuated windows for natural ventilation, a quarter-mile Earth Labyrinth beneath the building that acts as a natural ventilation system and heat sink, and the atrium pool that balances the system. The discussion covered the lobbying effort and alterations of regulations and state laws that allowed the facility to be built.

“The Unisphere is the largest site-powered net zero commercial building in the U.S., and it proved to be an inspiring and exciting facility for fellow commissioning professionals to tour. What we learned can help inform the design and operation of future facilities,” said Obermeier. “The group toured mechanical spaces to see how the Unisphere operates and visited office spaces to understand the control and operation of the automated natural ventilation system.”

The conversation continued after the tour with a happy hour at Third Hill Brewing Company.

BCxA is an international nonprofit organization with more than 1,200 members from the commercial building industry who are committed to the highest standards and practices for commissioning. For more information or to become involved with BCxA, visit