ASHRAE, founded in 1894, formerly known as the American Society for Heating, Refrigerating and Air conditioning Engineers (now, just ASHRAE) is an International professional society focused on
building systems,
energy efficiency,
indoor air quality,
and sustainability within the building technology industry

ASHRAE holds two conferences each year to provide a forum for the manufacturing and trade side come together with the research and governance side to exchange ideas and advance the building science. ASHRAE also publishes 4 major trade and research journals: ASHRAE Journal, HVAC&R Research, ASHRAE Transactions, and High Performance Buildings.

ASHRAE offers several certifications which are highly valued by the industry. Among those are Building Energy Assessment Professional (BEAP), Building Energy Modeling Professional (BEMP) and Health-Care Facility Design Professional (HFDP) certifications. Many employers look for BEAP and BEMP certified graduates.

Probably the most well-known facet of ASHRAE is its standards and guidelines for the HVAC&R industry. Standards 62.1 and 90.1 are referred to everywhere in the world where energy-conscious contractors think about building design.

The city of Birmingham is in region VII of ASHRAE and has its own active chapter.

ashrae bham

UAB hosts an ASHRAE student branch that is linked to the Birmingham Chapter of ASHRAE. Student membership application is easy and fast, and links UAB students to a variety of opportunities available to ASHRAE members. The Birmingham Chapter holds monthly luncheons at which speakers give lectures about various issues pertaining to ASHRAE missions. This venue provides an excellent opportunity for engineering students to link with executives from several companies operating in the region. Talking about careers is highly encouraged in those meetings.


Free ASHRAE resources
Student zone
Young Engineers in ASHRAE (YEA)


Dr. Hessam Taherian
, Student Branch Advisor

Justin Hill, Birmingham Chapter Student Activities Chair


A group of UAB Mechanical Engineering students are currently working on a project to design and manufacture a variable refrigerant flow (VRF) air-conditioning system which incorporates waste heat recovery. The project is funded through a grant awarded to Dr. Taherian by ASHRAE. The grant proposal was ranked #1 among ASHRAE Senior Design grants worldwide for the academic year 2013-14. As a result of this ASHRAE will send two group members to the ASHRAE winter conference in New York City to present their design. The trip is fully funded by ASHRAE.