VIRGINIA KEY, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Last week, the University of Miami (UM) officially opened its state-of-the-art research complex on the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science campus. The seawater-equipped complex supports groundbreaking, ocean and atmospheric research on hurricanes, coastal structures, marine life, human health and disease, and more.
The 1,000 gallons of seawater being pumped every minute into research laboratories is the lifeblood of the new $50 million Marine Technology and Life Sciences Seawater Complex. The 86,000-square foot LEED-certified facility supports research in two critical focus areas: air-sea interactions and marine life science.
The Glassell Family Foundation generously provided support for one of the two buildings of the Seawater Complex, the Alfred C. Glassell, Jr., SUSTAIN (Surge-Structure-Atmosphere Interaction) research facility, the only laboratory in the world capable of generating category-5 hurricane-force winds in a 3-D test environment. The 38,000-gallon SUSTAIN tank provides scientists and engineers with access to critical observations within a realistic but controlled environment to study the impacts of hurricane force winds and other extreme weather events on coastal communities.
Located in the other building of the Seawater Complex, the Marine Life Science Center brings together Rosenstiel School’s internationally recognized research in tropical marine biology and biomedicine under one roof. The Center provides a dedicated space for maintaining and studying living marine animals, including several species of fish and corals. Cutting-edge coral reef research, for which the Rosenstiel School is renowned, focuses on assessing and measuring the effects of climate change and ocean acidification on global reef-building processes. The space also houses the NIH-funded National Resource for Aplysia, the only facility in the world that cultures and raises sea hares (Aplysia californica) for scientific research in aging, memory, and learning.
UM was awarded a $15 million competitive grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) of the U.S. Department of Commerce for the new Seawater Complex, which is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). In addition to the Glassell Family Foundation, generous gifts from the Marta Weeks Family and the G. Unger Vetlesen Foundation have made the completion of the building possible. Cambridge Seven Associates were the architects and Suffolk Construction built the complex.
Momentum2: The Breakthrough Campaign for the University of Miami seeks to advance learning, elevate scholarship, and make bold strides in health care in the community, across the country, and around the world. Momentum2 comes on the heels of the institution’s record-breaking Momentum: The Campaign for the University of Miami, which concluded at the end of 2007 and raised more than $1.4 billion for endowed chairs and professorships, scholarships, facilities, academic and medical programs, and other initiatives. www.miami.edu/momentum2.