18 May 2016
Science & Engineering Research Support Facility (SERSF), Penryn
- Region: Cornwall
- Value: £5.5m
- Contract Term: JCT D&B 2011
- Procurement: Design & Build
- Completion: May 2015
The new £5.5m Science and Engineering Research Support Facility (SERSF) at the University of Exeter's Penryn Campus will be the base for the University's Business School.
The building has been designed over two floors, the ground floor shared by the Clean Energy Engineering Group (CEEG) and the Business School, and the first floor occupied by the Centre for Ecology and research teams.
The CEEG's section of the ground floor has been constructed with a specialist laboratory, designed to allow offshore energy research using a bespoke 15m water current flume, installed to provide state-of-the-art accurate simulation of offshore conditions. This complex laboratory required the installation of specialist plant machinery tailored to the flume's specific requirements, along with future-proofing elements to facilitate the further development of the group's practical research. The laboratory is accompanied by a large write-up room and several academic offices.
The Business School's ground floor department contains teaching areas, along with a specially designed and flexible area for business engagement called "The Collaboratory", from which dedicated staff, along with the University's Knowledge Exchange team, will lead a number of long-term research projects with selected local business partners.
The first floor of the building features a suite of Category 1 (with potential for Cat 2 upgrade) laboratories constructed to host the University's various dedicated research teams, designed to maximise natural daylight at the working spaces and provide services hidden seamlessly within the room fabric to support the specialist plant and research equipment. One lab was constructed with a dedicated autoclave room capable of dealing with the heat generated by the equipment on a daily basis, and all of the laboratories were designed with a bespoke chilled beam system to regulate the internal temperature, humidity and air quality of the room whilst avoiding condensation.
BREEAM Excellent was achieved. Sustainable building features include exposed concrete frame thermal mass elements, ventilation shafts and windows positioned to encourage air flow, free cooling prioritised over active cooling in laboratories, demand-led intelligent BMS with 100% LED lighting, daylight dimming and occupant sensing equipment, and installation of a 7.5kWp PV system