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Friday, September 12, 2014

Hot Rocks - (September 12)

UAS Construction Update for 9/12/2014

Hot Rocks

My grandmother told me stories that her mother would heat up a large rock on the wood stove at night.  When the rock was nice and warm, she would wrap it up in a towel and put in the bottom of her bed to keep her warm during a cold winter night. 

When I moved to Alaska 20+ years ago and had to pay my own heating bills, I turned down the thermostat to the cool to cold side and bought a couple more blankets.  Then one year a friend gave us some modern hot rocks.  These hot rocks are a cloth bag filled with some type of grain like wheat corn or rice.  Now we just pop a hot rock bag into the microwave, heat them up and put them in the bottom of our bed to keep warm at night.  Some hot rocks purchased at the store have included spices and fragrances and are intended as a heat or cold pack.  The one down side of these hot rocks is that they get cold in the middle of the night and you kick them out onto the floor.  That may be why grandmother never got more than 6 hours of sleep at night.

Grandmas Hot Rock


Grandmas Hot Rock2

Grandmas Hot Rock2




My Hot Rocks

My Hot Rocks



Each UAS Freshman Housing suite has what you could consider a mega-hot rock.  Heating is provided by hydronic heating in the floor.  (See Update on November 1, 2013)  This system runs hot water through tubes the 4 inch thick concrete floor resulting in a mega-hot rock that weights

(4-inches)(250 Square Feet)(1-foot/12-inches)(150lb/cubic feet) = 12,500 pounds.

This “mega-hot rock” weights 6 tons and will not get cold at night, even if you turn the thermostat all the way down and stop the hot water from flowing through the tubes in the concrete.  This mega-hot rock holds so much heat that it takes many, many hours for it to cool down or heat up.  Therefore, instead of living in a house that jumped between 56 – 70 everyday like I did, Residents with hydronic floor heating are encouraged to pick a temperature they like and stay at that temperature all the time.

Concrete Pour Last November to Create one Mega Hot Rock

Making Hot Rock




Pathway to Soboleff Building:  The Contractor is almost complete with their earth work, set foundations for the handrail and will be installing handrail posts in the next day or so.  They will be ready for asphalt pavement sometime next week, and then we just need to have a non-rainy day to get the paving done.

Posts Lined up for New Handrail

Posts for Handrail



Campus Exterior Parking Lot Lighting. 

Did you notice that we will lost 35 minutes of daylight last week?   Also did you notice that the Contractor got up two rows of LED parking lot lights?    The plan for next week is much the same,  lose 36 minutes of daylight and install the remaining two rows of parking lot lights.  Keep a watch out for new pathway lights showing up on Auke Lake Way.

Light Pole Foundation Proudly Supporting a New LED Light Pole

New LED Light



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