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New engineering complex to boost research at Ohio State

The new Biomedical and Materials Engineering Complex is set to be completed in summer 2020. Credit: Courtesy College of Engineering

Construction of the new Biomedical and Materials Engineering Complex on North Campus is underway, with hopes of it becoming a translational building for students and researchers — meaning the work translates from research to practical application.

The 124,000-square-foot complex will house both the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Department of Biomedical Engineering. The first phase of the project is expected to be completed in summer 2020.

“The Biomedical and Materials Engineering Complex, once referenced as the Advanced Materials Corridor, aligns with Framework 2.0 and the university’s strategic plan by enhancing both teaching and learning through improved facilities and support space,” Ohio State spokesman Dan Hedman said in a statement.

The $59.1 million building will benefit both students and professors with a location on West 19th Avenue, close to other engineering classes, which are currently held on North Campus.

Samir Ghadiali, professor and chair of biomedical engineering, said the new complex will be transformative for students, and with the Fisher College of Business across the street, there is a lot of excitement for collaborations between the two.

Ghadiali said he believes this is extremely valuable and will bring more opportunities for the undergraduate students. He also noted most students are entrepreneurs which will allow for entrepreneurial collaborations to be displayed for all who walk inside the new building.

On the first two floors, the BMEC will feature a 150-seat auditorium, five classrooms and two undergraduate computer labs.

The third and fourth floors, primarily for faculty and graduate students, feature four to six open labs — called research neighborhoods — for work on medical issues such as cancer and cardiovascular disease.

An open atrium surrounded by windows allows for students and researchers to see into the undergraduate research labs where hands-on learning takes place. Ghadiali said this is an important aspect of the translational design.

“The other thing it will allow us to do is come together as a department and interact in different
spaces,” he said.

The team’s vision, Ghadiali said, is for students to be able to work in a technological development location.

The new building will allow for more opportunities for undergraduate students and faculty in research labs, allowing them to develop new technology that could be used at the medical center. The Department of Biomedical Engineering works hand in hand with the College of Medicine as well as the Wexner Medical Center at Ohio State.

The BMEC is expected to open in summer 2020, according to the College of Engineering.

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