The new Chemistry Interdisciplinary Project (CHIP) research centre, entirely developed by the University of Camerino (UNICAM), was inaugurated in the presence of University and Research Minister Maria Cristina Messa.
The new research centre was completely designed by professors and researchers from the UNICAM’s School of Architecture and Design “Eduardo Vittoria” and will be devoted to research in the field of chemistry. The goal is to create state-of-the-art educational laboratories able to attract and train researchers, especially young researchers, from around the world.
Minister Messa mentioned young people during the inauguration event. “Thinking of the PNRR, the real mission, the best investment for the future is to think about young people, their skills, and ensure that university and research become the building blocks for the future”, said the Minister.
The CHIP building was built using innovative construction techniques to ensure a high level of safety in case of seismic events which are far from unlikely in Camerino. The university buildings were badly damaged by the earthquake that hit the city in 2016. The capacity to recover from difficulties, as demonstrated by the determination with which the University reacted to the earthquake at that time and, recently, to the pandemic emergency, recurred several times in the inaugural speeches.
“You have shown that in difficult times it is necessary to raise the stakes. Today’s challenge that we need to face together is the Country’s recovery, building a different future from the one we had imagined before. We have to do all we can to create a better future for young people”, concluded Minister Messa.
The structural idea behind the project was to meet the need to create an extremely safe building able to withstand even the most severe earthquakes. This is particularly important for a research centre that has to host highly sophisticated equipment and potentially dangerous activities on a daily basis.
The building designed by the UNICAM professors consists of two parts: a solid part in reinforced concrete anchored to the ground, and an upper part, in steel and glass, resting on 64 reinforced concrete pillars on top of which are placed seismic dampers. The capacity of the new building to withstand an extremely intense earthquake was tested during the project development stage through an earthquake simulation test of great scientific value.
The new research centre – which, as the acronym suggests, resembles a chip – will host research with interdisciplinary applications in the fields of new materials, agrifood, health and wellbeing, sustainable construction, restoration and preservation of cultural heritage.