Welcome!

News Feed Item

New Physical Sciences Complex Holds Revolutionary Promise

UMD celebrates grand opening of world-class research and education facility

COLLEGE PARK, Md., April 23, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The University of Maryland's new Physical Sciences Complex is an instant architectural landmark with its shimmering elliptical atrium, and with its official opening on April 23, 2014, the state-of-the-art research building is poised to become a landmark of scientific achievement.

University of Maryland, College Park Logo.

Designed to create ideal conditions for scientific innovation—precision in the laboratory and freewheeling conversation in the corridors—the Physical Sciences Complex is one of the largest building projects in the university's history. Constructed with a $115.7 contribution from the state of Maryland and $10.3 million from the federal government's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the 160,000-square-foot building houses nearly 50 laboratories, more than half of which were constructed to the most stringent technical standards.

This gives the university one of the nation's largest expanses of top-quality research space, which already is attracting top scientists who will collaborate on groundbreaking discoveries about the universe, quantum science and the battle against disease. Occupying the new space are the university's physics and astronomy departments; the interdisciplinary Institute for Physical Science and Technology; and the Joint Quantum Institute, a partnership between NIST and UMD.

"The partnership between NIST and the University of Maryland, going back some 40 years now, is one of our oldest, longest running, and most productive collaborations, but the new Physical Sciences Complex is a new high. We're very pleased to have played in part in the creation of this outstanding research facility," said Patrick Gallagher, director of NIST and under secretary of commerce for standards and technology.

The capabilities of the Physical Sciences Complex will enhance UMD's leadership in theoretical, experimental and applied quantum science research, placing the university firmly at the leading edge of what is likely to be the next great scientific revolution.

"The yellow brick road in cutting-edge fields like quantum science now leads to College Park," says UMD President Wallace Loh. "Our faculty are now demonstrating the feasibility of quantum computing, and with these advanced facilities, they will have the tools and new partnerships to develop the concept."

Fifteen years in the planning, and designed with extensive input from faculty members in the College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences, the facility reflects the university's commitment to collaborative research of the highest technical standards.

"The new Physical Sciences Complex is a key component of our university's strategy to work across disciplines and with federal and state partners to create the innovations of tomorrow and educate the next generation of science and technology leaders," says Jayanth Banavar, dean of the College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences.

Today's experiments in quantum science and other technically demanding fields require precise control over conditions such as temperature, humidity and vibration. To accomplish this, the Physical Sciences Complex is built of reinforced concrete, which is stronger than steel. Laboratories' temperatures are controlled to within .5 degree Celsius (.9 degree Fahrenheit); humidity is controlled to within 1 percent; and laboratory walls are isolated to minimize vibrations.

Two levels of underground laboratories, as much as 55 feet below the building's plaza, were designed for researchers working with atoms and lasers and were built to the exacting standards of NIST's Advanced Measurement Laboratory, one of the most sophisticated labs in the world for quantum physics research. The underground setting minimizes vibrations, electromagnetic variations and radiofrequency interference. To further reduce the chance of interference with delicate instruments, telephone connections are fiber optic and electrical wiring is carried through special insulated conduits. Anti-static flooring helps control static electricity.

The Physical Sciences Complex's most striking architectural feature is a wide elliptical atrium. Shaped to reflect the orbits of planets and stars, the atrium soars through all four above-ground levels. The ellipse is lined with 953 panes of clear and red glass in a checkerboard pattern and opens the building up to the sky, flooding interior spaces with light. Corridors around the ellipse are extra wide and furnished with comfortable armchairs and couches to serve as gathering places for students and faculty.

The use of natural light is among the design features that earned the building Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. Other features include energy-efficient fixtures, materials that come from rapidly renewable resources or include recycled content, reduced water use, a green roof, and plantings that capture stormwater runoff from paved surfaces and filter it into the soil.

At the base of the ellipse, the Gluckstern Garden honors the memory of Robert L. Gluckstern, who was a UMD physicist and former chancellor of the University of Maryland (this position is now called president). The glass-walled lobby has a café and views of the garden and the plaza surrounding the building.

University officials hoped the new facility would boost recruitment of leading scientists, and this is already proving true. This year two top experimental condensed matter physicists joined the Joint Quantum Institute, which also has recruited a higher number of promising young graduate students to attend UMD this fall than in years past.

The building is also attracting stars of a different kind. Its striking architecture earned it a role in an upcoming episode of "Veep," the Emmy-award-winning HBO comedy starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus, which airs April 27, 2014.

-University of Maryland/College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences -

Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130808/DC61542LOGO

SOURCE University of Maryland

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Agile has finally jumped the technology shark, expanding outside the software world. Enterprises are now increasingly adopting Agile practices across their organizations in order to successfully navigate the disruptive waters that threaten to drown them. In our quest for establishing change as a core competency in our organizations, this business-centric notion of Agile is an essential component of Agile Digital Transformation. In the years since the publication of the Agile Manifesto, the conn...
"We're developing a software that is based on the cloud environment and we are providing those services to corporations and the general public," explained Seungmin Kim, CEO/CTO of SM Systems Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
The question before companies today is not whether to become intelligent, it’s a question of how and how fast. The key is to adopt and deploy an intelligent application strategy while simultaneously preparing to scale that intelligence. In her session at 21st Cloud Expo, Sangeeta Chakraborty, Chief Customer Officer at Ayasdi, provided a tactical framework to become a truly intelligent enterprise, including how to identify the right applications for AI, how to build a Center of Excellence to oper...
"IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventi...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Telecom Reseller has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Telecom Reseller reports on Unified Communications, UCaaS, BPaaS for enterprise and SMBs. They report extensively on both customer premises based solutions such as IP-PBX as well as cloud based and hosted platforms.
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, James Henry, Co-CEO/CTO of Calgary Scientific Inc., introduced you to the challenges, solutions and benefits of training AI systems to solve visual problems with an emphasis on improving AIs with continuous training in the field. He explored applications in several industries and discussed technologies that allow the deployment of advanced visualization solutions to the cloud.
While some developers care passionately about how data centers and clouds are architected, for most, it is only the end result that matters. To the majority of companies, technology exists to solve a business problem, and only delivers value when it is solving that problem. 2017 brings the mainstream adoption of containers for production workloads. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ben McCormack, VP of Operations at Evernote, discussed how data centers of the future will be managed, how the p...
Large industrial manufacturing organizations are adopting the agile principles of cloud software companies. The industrial manufacturing development process has not scaled over time. Now that design CAD teams are geographically distributed, centralizing their work is key. With large multi-gigabyte projects, outdated tools have stifled industrial team agility, time-to-market milestones, and impacted P&L stakeholders.
Enterprises are adopting Kubernetes to accelerate the development and the delivery of cloud-native applications. However, sharing a Kubernetes cluster between members of the same team can be challenging. And, sharing clusters across multiple teams is even harder. Kubernetes offers several constructs to help implement segmentation and isolation. However, these primitives can be complex to understand and apply. As a result, it’s becoming common for enterprises to end up with several clusters. Thi...
"NetApp is known as a data management leader but we do a lot more than just data management on-prem with the data centers of our customers. We're also big in the hybrid cloud," explained Wes Talbert, Principal Architect at NetApp, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"We're focused on how to get some of the attributes that you would expect from an Amazon, Azure, Google, and doing that on-prem. We believe today that you can actually get those types of things done with certain architectures available in the market today," explained Steve Conner, VP of Sales at Cloudistics, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"Space Monkey by Vivent Smart Home is a product that is a distributed cloud-based edge storage network. Vivent Smart Home, our parent company, is a smart home provider that places a lot of hard drives across homes in North America," explained JT Olds, Director of Engineering, and Brandon Crowfeather, Product Manager, at Vivint Smart Home, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
"Cloud Academy is an enterprise training platform for the cloud, specifically public clouds. We offer guided learning experiences on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud and all the surrounding methodologies and technologies that you need to know and your teams need to know in order to leverage the full benefits of the cloud," explained Alex Brower, VP of Marketing at Cloud Academy, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clar...