Groundbreaking Ceremony for New Mineral Engineering Building


Sod-turning ceremony for high-tech research facility on 1,400 square metres at Forckenbeckstraße has been completed.

  Copyright: © Bernd Klass, BLB NRW Head of Institute Professor Rainer Telle, Dr. Sandra Scheermesser from NRW Ministry of Culture and Science, borough mayor Alexander Gilson, BLB assistant branch manager Ute Willems and RWTH Rector Ernst Schmachtenberg (f.l.)

With a symbolic first 'turning of the sod' work has now begun on the replacement building for the Institute of Mineral Engineering, EGHI. RWTH Rector Ernst Schmachtenberg, Sandra Scheermesser from the NRW ministry of Culture and Science, Ute Willems from BLB NRW as well as Head of Institute, Professor Rainer Telle, together officially declared that construction is beginning.

A key research area at the Institute of Mineral Engineering is the development, manufacture, processing and recycling of mineral materials. The institute consists of two chairs with individual focuses, the Department of Ceramics and Refractory Materials on one hand and the Department of Glass and Ceramic Composites on the other. It furthermore includes the teaching and research area of Modelling in Materials Engineering. More than 1,400 square metres of laboratory space will, in the future, be available for state-of-the-art fume hoods with exhaust air scrubbers and a demineralization system, while special areas will also be allocated for heavy processing equipment, very-high-temperature furnaces and electron microscopes. A separate laboratory, suitable among other things for 3D-printing of multifunctional ceramics parts, will complete the experimental facilities. For teaching purposes a small lecture hall of about 80 square metres and a classroom of 50 square metres are envisaged. BLB NRW as builder-owner and landlord is investing a sum in the double-digit-million-euro range and is expecting construction to last about two years. Düsseldorf planning office Rohling provided the building plans for construction.

The Faculty is pooling its resources on campus

The Institute of Mineral Engineering, GHI (de), is one of altogether nine institutes that make up the Faculty of Georesources and Materials Engineering at RWTH Aachen. The exceptional mechanical, physical and chemical properties of materials examined by GHI researchers open up a broad range of applications in areas such as mechanical engineering, the glass industry, environmental and power engineering – and even in high temperature settings, such as medical engineering. In the space currently occupied, proper teaching and research can no longer be sufficiently ensured. The future building will much better meet the specific high-tech requirements of its occupiers.

“On approximately the same amount of space, we are gaining a thouroughly designed, modern and reliable infrastructure offering the best possible conditions for experimental processes. The distances between separate laboratory units will be much shorter and communication will be much improved and intensified by having open meeting points,” emphasizes Professor Telle and adds: “After just having celebrated our 90-year anniversary in Mineral Engineering in 2018, of course the location at Mauerstraße with its close proximity to the RWTH Main Building and the city centre is very dear to our hearts, but obviously this space in the middle of a residential area can, after our move, be utilized in a much better way from a city planning perspective .”

Other Institutes in the Faculty of Georesources and Materials Engineering, now scattered across the entire city, are to move to the new neighborhood of the GHI in the future as well.

Source: Press and Communications