Western Environmental Corporation - Environmental Enclosure Specialists

Centers for Manufacturing Technology, A U.S. Department of Energy Facility

LOCATION: Oak Ridge, Tennessee

PROJECT: National Gear Metrology Center


Western Environmental Corporation was the selected firm to build a temperature and humidity controlled room for the National Gear Metrology Laboratory at the Oak Ridge Centers for Manufacturing Technology. It was to be built with a very stringent specification for temperature control of plus or minus 0.1F, with precision gradient control. The managers of the Oak Ridge Metrology Center receive a horizontal laminal flow minimizing the impact of temperature stratification, thus wanted this lab to be constructed accordingly. The laboratory established a gear metrology program at Y-12 under a partnership between NIST, AGMA, ASME & Penn State.


Air tends to stratify by temperature differential and because of this, the engineers from the Oak Ridge Centers for Manufacturing Technology (ORCMT)and Western Environmental worked together to develop a means to minimize stratification while meeting the temperature control requirements for the laboratory. In addition, ORCMT needed to maximize use of the room area, so a horizontal air flow radiating from the center of the lab was agreed upon. The experience of the ORCMT engineers and the experience of the Western Environmental engineers in air flow properties provided a means for the company to exceed the original temperature control requirements and now provides ORCMT with one of the most accurately temperature-controlled labs in the industry.


The Gear Metrology Laboratory now certifies gear involute masters to standards traceable to NIST. The certification of the gear masters from all over the United States was made possible when W.E.C. provided precise environmental control of the lab to the following specifications:

- Temperature: 68F +/- 0.1F
- Relative Humidity: 45% +/- 10%
- Cleanliness: ISO 7 (Class 10,000)
- Air Flow: Horizontal Laminar (Radial from room center)

- Temperature: 68 +/- 0.06F
- Relative Humidity: 45% +/- 5%
- Cleanliness: ISO 6 (1,000)