Dariush Arasteh, staff scientist, at the University of California’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) in Berkeley, Calif., passed away peacefully on February 3 after a long battle with cancer. Arasteh was known in the door and window industry for his technical and innovative solutions.

“Dariush was not only one of the pillars of our R&D team, but was an active member of the national and international community who shared a concern for solving the planet’s energy challenges,” says Steven Stephen Selkowitz, an LBNL colleague.

According to LBNL, since 1982 Arasteh has been involved in all aspects of research on energy-efficient windows at LBNL, including the development and experimental analysis of highly insulating “superwindows;” writing of computer tools to analyze window heat transfer; and leading industry to develop a fair, accurate, and credible rating system for the thermal performance of windows.

Arasteh was widely known by the door and window industry and was often a fixture at industry meetings, such as the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC).

John Carmody, director of the Center for Sustainable Building Research at the University of Minnesota, “considers him a friend and colleague,” and attended “all of those early NFRC meetings” with him.

“He was one of the main technical support people and part of the critical committees that established those first levels and details of the NFRC label,” says Carmody. “He was right in the middle of it.”

And this was not always an easy place to be.

“It was quite challenging to get everyone to agree so he had to be not just a technical expert but work with people and be diplomatic.” This is something Carmody says Arasteh was particularly good at.

“He was effective at bridging across many different areas and talking to many different people,” says Carmody. “He understood new breakthrough technologies. He definitely was in the world of innovation, but he was also involved in developing standards, building codes and programs like ENERGY STAR. He was comfortable in all these areas, which is rare.”

Carmody even authored two books with Arasteh covering both the residential and commercial window industries: Window Systems for High Performance Buildings and the new edition of Residential Windows: A Guide to New Technologies and Energy Performance.

The industry remembers him as a great contributor to the window industry, but also as a great friend.

“We will miss not only his technical contributions, but his passion, his wit and his friendship,” says Selkowitz.

“He was a great human being who had a wonderful sense of humor and I enjoyed being in his presence when we had the opportunity,” adds Carmody, who also applauds the way he dealt with his cancer diagnosis.

“When he was diagnosed eight years ago he had so much courage and drive even though it was so serious,” he says. “He did whatever he could to keep going. It took tremendous effort and energy. He wanted to do that to see his son grow up. Most people would have not have pushed that hard for so long.”

Arasteh left some thoughts for his friends and colleagues and they in turn are sharing their remembrances.

LBNL also sent a note to its employees today remembering Arasteh, both as a person and regarding his contributions to the industry.


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