Measurement Standards Laboratory of New Zealand Hero

Measurement Standards Laboratory of New Zealand

As part of a larger programme of work upgrading and future-proofing aging research facilities at Callaghan Innovation, a new purpose-built laboratory was constructed for the scientists and technicians who work on Measurement Standards Laboratory of New Zealand’s Electrical and Temperature Standards.

The new Measurement Standards Laboratory of New Zealand (MSL) building features a relatively simple and low-cost exterior structure (steel and metal cladding), sitting on a large concrete raft slab to provide resilience against liquefaction.

The building is designed to have minimal electrical interference and achieves this by de-bonding between any steel or aluminum elements (e.g. slab reinforcing does not touch the steel portal frames) to prevent loops that can create magnetic fields.

The fitout of the laboratories consist of highly controlled spaces that keep temperatures within tight tolerances. The electrical lab, which required the strictest controls of +/- 0.1 Celsius, consists of a separate internal structure made from structurally insulated panels to provide a very stable temperature environment.

A high volume, high accuracy HVAC system controls the temperature to the required specification. The labs also have additional features such as anti-static flooring, anti-static benchtops, plastic cable trays, ultra clean power supplies, and light-tight rooms.

Hawkins worked closely with Callaghan Innovation and the consultant team at the ECI stage. This gave Hawkins a deeper understanding of the project, allowed for a highly collaborative environment and fostered a positive working relationship between all parties.

Hawkins was able to take feedback from the client and quickly make adjustments. There were weekly site visits involving Hawkins and Callaghan Innovation. The Hawkins team also had regular discussions with the end users to ensure that their expectations and requirements where being met. Where there were discrepancies, these were picked up early and resolved. 

The new building will improve the products and outcomes of the Measurements Standards Laboratory of New Zealand. 

MSL provides an essential service to the New Zealand scientific and business community. The new building needed to provide the client with a space that was stable and controlled therefore, quality control was critical to ensure the product was installed exactly as designed and specified. This building has met all performance requirements specified, and the client is delighted with the end result.