10/11/2012 04:48 PM
BATON ROUGE – The LSU Colleges of Science and Engineering celebrated the completion
of the Chemistry and Materials Building during a ribbon-cutting celebration on Thursday,
Oct. 11. This facility expands the university’s research capacity in synthetic chemistry
and provides critical infrastructure for interdisciplinary research in materials science
“The state has invested in LSU with the responsibility to be an academic, research
and economic leader, and we are committed to excellence in those areas,” said LSU
Interim System President and Interim Chancellor William Jenkins. “With this state-of-the-art
facility, LSU will be able to recruit great faculty and students.”
The new Chemistry and Materials Building will allow LSU students, faculty and staff
to be more competitive in obtaining research funding and grants. Last year alone,
LSU won more than $142 million in new grants and contracts, with 23 percent of those
coming from the College of Science.
“Research grants, plus patents and technology transfer, will allow LSU to increase
its $1.2 billion economic impact on the state,” Jenkins said. “This is more than just
LSU’s competitiveness, this is all about America’s global competitiveness, and, as
you can see, this is much more than just a building.”
Gov. Bobby Jindal, along with LSU administrators and faculty and student representatives, officially cut the ribbon on the Chemistry and Materials Science Building. The Jindal administration invested nearly $34 million to build the new facility.
“This 85,000 square-foot facility will expand the university’s research capacity in
synthetic chemistry and provide critical facilities for research in materials science
and engineering,” Jindal said. “This new facility will provide a world-class learning
and teaching environment that will draw students, faculty and researchers from Louisiana
and around the world. Indeed, research conducted in this new facility will have real-world
applications in our state and will be applied to manufacturing techniques, healthcare
and energy production.
“This new facility will play a critical role in helping our chemical and engineering
students get the world-class skills they need to find great jobs. That in turn will
make Louisiana even more attractive to companies looking to invest, expand and create
jobs here in Louisiana.”
The five-story, state-of-the-art facility, provides more than 85,000 gross square
feet of research laboratory space and support facilities. Research space for the Department
of Chemistry will be increased by 50 percent.
“This is an exciting time for both the College of Science and for LSU,” said Kevin
Carman, dean of the LSU College of Science. “This facility will substantially advance
our mission as a major research university, and I am particularly pleased that it
will support LSU’s growing interdisciplinary strength in materials science and engineering.”
During the ribbon-cutting ceremony, Carman recognized all of the people involved in
the planning and the ultimate construction of the new facility, including the important
collaboration between the College of Science and the College of Engineering to be
able to share the research space.
“I’m confident that this new building will allow us to achieve even greater research
accomplishments, which will in turn further stimulate the economy of Louisiana,” Carman
Research conducted in this new facility will have significant economic implications
for applications in manufacturing techniques, healthcare and energy production. Louisiana’s
chemical industry employs more than 30,000 and generates almost $1 billion annually
in tax revenues.
“Support for this multi-user facility evidences the growing importance of interdisciplinary
research on LSU’s campus,” said Rick Koubek, dean of the LSU College of Engineering.
“Faculty members from science and engineering working collaboratively in this building
holds promise for important discoveries in advanced materials.”
The first floor of the building, dedicated to a materials-characterization facility,
will provide a centralized resource for electron microscopes and other sophisticated
instruments. The second through fourth floors house laboratories specifically designed
for synthetic chemistry and materials science, as well as faculty and staff offices
and instrumentation rooms. The fifth floor will contain clean rooms for microfabrication
and four additional labs specifically designated for collaborative interdisciplinary
“The world’s greatest discoveries are the realizations of daring dreams,” Koubek said.
“Here at LSU, our faculty dream big, and they dream big for Louisiana. Every day,
LSU faculty work together to solve Louisiana’s great scientific and engineering challenges
to enhance the economic vitality and quality of life for our citizens.”
The building has 140 work areas for faculty and will also feature two multipurpose
laboratories that will be used for general holding instruments and faculty research.
Six large six-person synthetic labs will occupy the center of the building and feature
shared student office space in front of each lab.
“LSU has already made substantial investments in attracting outstanding faculty, and
this building will help those scholars and their students realize their full potential,”
New Orleans architectural firm Lyons & Hudson completed the primary building design
with scientific lab expertise provided by Karlsberger Inc. The state of Louisiana
provided funding for the building, enough to erect the structure and complete the
first four floors. The fifth floor will be completed in 2013.
“As an artist expresses creativity with a brush and canvas, our faculty need laboratories, clean rooms and synchrotrons to create revolutionary scientific advances,” Koubek said. “The newly constructed Chemistry and Materials Building provides us that pallet, in which our faculty can embark on joint ventures to visualize and realize the bold dreams of those daring to push the boundaries of discovery.”
Posted on Thursday, October 11, 2012