Client University of Southampton
Location Southampton, UK
2012 AIA Built Award Honor
2012 AIA Northwest Pacific Region Merit
2009 RIBA Regional Award
The Mountbatten Nanotechnology Research Centre is a state of the art research centre for nanotechnology at the University of Southampton. The new building replaces a previous facility on the same site which was destroyed by fire in October 2005. The University of Southampton is world renowned for its excellence in the engineering science and as a leading research centre for nanotechnology. Jestico + Whiles was appointed to design the new building, with CH2M Hill IDC as clean room designers and M+E engineers.
The £55m Mountbatten Building houses two departments, ORC (Optoelectronics Research Centre) and ECS (the School of Electronics and Computer Science), each with its own clean rooms, laboratories and academic offices.
The brief for the building was an onerous one: not only must it provide technically demanding research and academic working environments of an unusually exacting nature, it also has to serve as a showcase for the high quality of research and academic excellence of the two departments and the university as a whole, in order to attract industry funding and future staff and students.
Simple, dynamic forms with a limited palette of appropriately ‘hi-tech’ materials combine to produce an embodiment of 21st century scientific research in an academic setting.
'It was a pleasure to interact with the architects during the development of the design of the Mountbatten Building. The building has an extremely complex technical function, but was also required to deliver a striking presence and visual accessibility of the normally hidden ‘clean room’ functions.'
'It has since won an RIBA South award, and the numerous visitors I have escorted around it are invariably highly complimentary. The visibility of the clean room activity is outstanding and much commented on.'
Rutt, Head of School of Electronics and Computer Science.