Minderoo Centre – Plastics and Human Health, although small, is a highly technical research facility which has the potential to have a profound effect on the kinds of materials we use in our daily lives. To minimise the use of materials with any plastic content, and meet laboratory codes, the project clads; floors, walls and ceilings in a combination of stainless steel and molten metals whilst also finding strategies to deal with safe slip resistant walking surfaces, acoustics (in an environment of 100% hard surfaces) and achieving high levels of research laboratory cleanliness by sealing all joints (without using traditional sealants) whilst simultaneously dealing with the expansion and contraction of materials.
Benchmarked against the only other known facilities in the world, this project has less contaminants.
The Minderoo Centre demonstrates the skill of the architect in researching and delivering for technically complex project requirements. This project is not about beauty; it’s about process, knowledge, and capability, and the architect has harnessed all of these to dig deep and meet functional scientific requirements for a nanoplastic and human health laboratory that is free of plastics and other contaminants.
The ability of the architect to go ‘back to basics’ and test every element of the design and construction, from floor to walls to ceilings to equipment, in order to remove all plastic shows a commitment to the demands of a tenacious brief for a unique and world-leading research facility.
Michael Christensen, Project Architect
Valentina Ponomariova, Graduate of Architecture
Cardno, Structural Engineer
Hawkins Jenkins Ross, Electrical Consultant
Hawkins Jenkins Ross, Hazard Assessment
Hawkins Jenkins Ross, Wet Fire Engineer
Knisco, Building Certifier
Plumbing Design and Drafting, Hydraulic Consultant
Steele Wrobel, Quantity Surveyor
UQ Photography, Photographer