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£1.5M Multidisciplinary Lab Launched

Published: Thu 26 Mar 2015

New Multi-disciplinary Lab opens. Students at the University of Bradford will experience cutting edge learning with the opening of a new £1.5m engineering laboratory.

The Multi-disciplinary Lab uses the latest technology and software to combine theory with practical work, reducing the need for separate, theory-based lectures.

The lab, housed in the Faculty of Engineering and Informatics' Chesham Building at the University's city campus, contains equipment that can be used across the engineering disciplines, including civil, mechanical, medical and chemical and so represents not only a more practical learning environment but also an efficient use of space. Students from the School of Media, Design and Technology and the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science will also benefit from use of the new lab.

Open plan with clearly defined areas, the lab allows students to move around with the equipment they’re using and use the space in a totally new way. The University already has a national reputation for producing highly employable graduates and the lab will further strengthen links with industry. Leaders of regional business and industry were be among the guests at the official opening, and had the opportunity to watch demonstrations of the state-of-the-art equipment.

Part of the University’s ongoing strategy for learning and teaching is to focus on research informed curriculum. The new lab facilities will lend itself well to this informed and in-depth way of teaching; by keeping the students hands on they will further their understanding of the real physics behind their subjects. Even the ceiling has been intentionally left uncovered so that the inner working of the lab can be seen and understood.

Within the lab there is a variety of kit allowing each student across the Engineering spectrum to develop a deeper understanding of the basic principles; a Pin Joined Framework shows the stresses and strains in a truss structure, whilst a Bernoulli Apparatus shows how pressure affects liquid in restricted pipes.

Brand new microscopes, interactive boards and dialysis machines are just a few of the tools students will be able to get to grips with. Each piece of equipment is linked with a computer, combining the use of digital software with real practical learning. 

Khalid Hussain, Head of the School of Engineering, said:
"The Multi-disciplinary Lab will provide a much more practical way of teaching, allowing students to be immersed in the practical application of theory, getting a better feel for what a theory represents in reality. The lab is the result of both the University's aim to be a leader in technology learning and a response to student feedback for more hands-on learning."

Vice Chancellor Professor Brian Cantor said:
"Cutting-edge hands-on work environments with state-of-the-art equipment are making the University of Bradford the technology University of the North, and the addition of the Multidisciplinary Engineering Lab reinforces our expertise."

This lab is not just for now, for present students, but looks to the future of Engineering.

(Pictured are Vice Chancellor Professor Brian Cantor (left) and Andy Hamilton from Cummins Turbo-Technologies.)

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