Brunel University officially breaks ground on its new research laboratory facility for the Brunel Centre for Advanced Solidification Technology (BCAST)September 2014
Pascall+Watson were appointed by Brunel University to design and deliver this new 1455m² building located within the Uxbridge Campus’ Science Park. The purpose of the BCAST 2 is to bridge the gap between fundamental research and industrial applications. It will support the UK manufacturing sector by conducting research and development in resource efficient processing of high performance alloys for automotive applications. Together with the existing BCAST facilities at Brunel the new building will provide high performance light alloys and resource efficient processing technologies to meet the long- and mid-term needs of the automotive industry.
BCAST have secured EPSRC government funding to extend their research programme together with financial contributions from Jaguar Land Rover and automotive supplier Constellium forming a collaborative research partnership.
The project began construction after an official Ground Breaking Ceremony on Monday 8 September 2014, having gained Planning Permission in June. The ceremony was attended by Brunel University’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Julia Buckingham and Professor Fan of BCAST, together with representatives from BCAST’s research partners, Jaguar Land Rover and automotive suppliers Constellium and Sarginsons. Guests were given tours of the construction site, from the comfort of a new Range Rover Evoque, provided by JLR for the day.
The building will host a 57x22m clear span research laboratory, 11m high to accommodate industrial sized specialist research equipment, arranged either side of central circulation corridor. The entire laboratory floor space will be serviced by two overhead gantry cranes, giving complex flexibility for new machinery in the future. A small accommodation wing at the western end includes a technician’s office, meeting and breakout room with a large oriel feature window and associated welfare facilities in accordance with contemporary design standards for research buildings. The facility building has been arranged to be sympathetic to the university campus, and its green belt location, by sinking the building 2 metres into the sloping landscape reducing the building’s height to the public road.