This drawing shows the south elevation
of Nanotech I.
By early 2005, the doors
will open on a new research building that falls under
a newly coined term, "boutique nanotechnology."
The University of South Florida (USF) hired HDR to provide
architectural and engineering services for this highly
specialized nanoscience building on its Tampa campus.
As with any boutique, the scale is smaller, but the quality
high. At 15,000 gross square feet, "Nanotech I,"
as the new building will be called, is notably smaller
than other large, high-profile complex labs designed by
HDR. However, the $3 million facility will have all the
bells and whistles as its more sizeable counterparts.
The lab will house clean rooms, high-quality wet laboratories,
metrology labs, test areas and supporting office space.
According to Alan Temple, AIA, HDR project manager, the
university wanted a standalone facility, apart from the
university's other research buildings, for the express
purpose of studying nanomaterials and nanomanufacturing.
USF's First Core Facility
This will be the first core facility,
said Professor Michael Kovac, director of nanotechnology
and nanomanufacturing at USF. It is one of five that the
university plans, aimed at bringing together multi-discipline,
multi-college users, as well as outside researchers, he
said, noting the burgeoning trend toward collaborative
research. This side-by-side work environment for researchers
of diverse backgrounds facilitates totally unpredictable
and spectacular results through interactive knowledge-sharing,
USF is firmly committed to nanotechnology research,
and anticipates significant recruiting benefits from showcasing
our research facilities, in terms of both students and
faculty, he said.
According to Jim Wermes, PE, HDR mechanical/electrical
and process systems engineer for the project, the lab
required the same extremely tight tolerances as other
similar facilities, in terms of noise, for example. With
sound requirements below the threshold of human hearing,
mechanical systems like air conditioning become critical
The building's design centers around flexibility, in its
current layout and for expansion and future development,
Temple said. The interior must be modular so that various
activities can be moved around. In short, although it
is a smaller lab in the overall scheme of nanotechnology
labs, the same complex systems had to be considered and
installed for the identical kinds of highly sensitive,
highly technical research work.
HDR will deliver the same quality building as in
a much larger facility, according to Mark Jamison,
HDR national director of advanced technology, so
the smaller labs that we design still realize the same
bang for the buck.