The Extreme Photonics Applications Centre (EPAC) development on the Harwell campus in Oxfordshire is a new purpose-designed building that will house a unique, state-of-the-art high power and high repetition laser system, generating precise 3D images of the internal structure of objects from aircraft wings to bones. The government has announced a £81m investment in the EPAC, with funding provided through the R&D-focused Strategic Priorities Fund.
The centre will help researchers and industry better understand the composition of new materials and how they behave in different conditions. It is a highly strategic, disruptive technology and directly supports the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy.
Mace, was appointed by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) to deliver the EPAC. Mace will work with the STFC, designers, a global concrete specialist and our supply chain partners to deliver the whole project, including the experimental areas of the building where high intensity lasers will be tested.
Professor John Collier, Director of the UK’s Central Laser Facility, said:
“As our construction partner in the EPAC project Mace will be contributing, alongside the work of the team of the scientists and engineers at STFC’s Central Laser Facility and our colleagues in academia, to a project that will enable the UK to realise the potential offered by laser driven radiation sources to be genuinely disruptive and that will soon bring together the wider science community in a diverse programme of fundamental and applied research.”
Terry Spraggett, Managing Director for Public Sector Construction at Mace, said:
“We are delighted to be appointed to deliver EPAC, marking another step forward in our relationship with the STFC. The Extreme Photonics Application Centre is a technically complex and challenging project, and we will use our experience in delivering cutting edge research facilities to realise the client’s vision.”
Billington Structures fabricated and installed approximately 300 tonnes of structural steel, including beam members connected to the concrete core and decorative paint finishes. The project included multiple phased handovers on a tight programme.