• Edmonton, AB
  • University of Alberta and National Research Council
  • 21,322 sq m
  • 229,511 sq ft
  • MCW Hemisphere Ltd.
  • PCL Construction Management Inc. 
  • Stantec
DIALOG Services
  • Architecture
  • Structural Engineering
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National Institute for Nanotechnology (NINT) is one of North America's few "ultra quiet" buildings and Canada’s flagship for collaborative nanotechnology research in engineering, biology, chemistry, physics, computing science, medicine, and pharmacy. It provides state-of-the-art characterization instruments and clean room facilities that are extremely sensitive to interference from vibration, noise, electromagnetic fields, and environmental changes. NINT is designed to foster collaboration and to bridge the gaps between scientific disciplines.

university alberta nint vibration dialog 4

Point of Interest 01

Engineering innovation can be seen in the approach to the design of the vibration isolation slabs for the characterization suites. First, measurements of ambient vibrations on the NINT project site were taken to identify the “sweet spot”—the specific area with the lowest levels of ambient vibration. The architectural planning evolved so that the most sensitive characterization labs would be located in a separate building wing located at the sweet spot.

university alberta nint model dialog 4

Point of Interest 02

The majority of the ground floor is dedicated to the Class 1000 clean room and nanofabrication facility, and the high-end characterization suites. These were all located to avoid vibrations from nearby vehicular traffic and by other occupants working within the building. Aside from the vibration-isolated slabs in the characterization suites, the structure uses slabs on grade in the clean room, and a concrete slab-and-beam system for standard labs in the superstructure of the main building.


2006 Award of Merit, Consulting Engineers of Alberta

2008 Award of Excellence – Buildings Category, Canadian Consulting Engineers