Shut the Hood
The Shut the Hood project is an initiative from Green Office Wageningen related to improving both the safety of usage and the energy consumption of fume hoods on campus. You can find out more about the project, it’s vision and it’s results on this webpage.
Did you know that the Wageningen campus has more than 600 fume hoods that are used by both employees and studies? Studies have shown that for a large part of these fume hoods the sash is permantly open, even during the weekends and the holidays. The fume hoods being open when they are not in use is a problem. An open hood is less safe than a shut one and an open hood is also combined with the fume hood being in the highest ventilation stance, meaning a lot of energy is wasted.
In order to reduce the amount of fume hoods that are open outside of working hours, Green Office Wageningen has started the ‘Shut the Hood’ project. A campaign that focuses on informing, motivating and incentivizing both students and employees on a variety of topics surrounding fume hood usage. On this webpage you will hence not only find information and arguments, but also a wide variety of projects that you can participate with.
If a fume hood has its sash open, it is most likely also in the highest ventilation stance. As such, the direct energy usage of the fume hood is higher than if the same fume hoods would be in the lowest ventilation stance. However, the largest amount of energy of a fume hood in the highest ventilation stance is indirect. As fume hood sucks air out of a building and transports this outside, fresh air has to be brought in again. But before the fresh air is let into the building and the labs, it first has to be treated and heated, which costs a tremendous amount of energy.
Combining both the direct and indirect energy usage, a fume hood that is permanently in the highest ventilation stance will on average use the same amount of energy as 3.5 households. On the other hand, a fume hood in the lowest ventilation stance will on average only consume the same amount of energy as 1.5 households. Everybody wins if we reduce our combined energy usage, so lets Shut the Hood!
Fume hoods often contain dangerous chemicals or substances as a manner of storing them, or as residue from previous experimentation. Though an open fume hood is supposed to provide enough ventilation power to adequatly deal with its contents, a closed fume hood reduces the likelihood of substances or chemicals escaping when a fume hood is not being used. This is especially beneficial in overnight situations when a lab is empty and there is nobody around to intervene. So stay safe and Shut the Hood!
The Shut the Hood campaign is made up of a number of distinct projects. Some projects, like the placement of red and green arrows, or the next to fume hoods, are meant to raise awareness. Other projects like our infographic and practicumclip (coming soon) are there to inform both students and employees. Finally, our fume hood competition (coming soon) aims to incentivise fume hood users to close their fume hood by offering comparative insight into their practices.
If you want to help us spread our message you can share this infographic via e-mail, on your/your organisations Facebook or by simply printing it!
Don’t hesitate to ask us at firstname.lastname@example.org!