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National Infrastructure Laboratory

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About the National Infrastructure Laboratory

This facility was created to find new ways of improving existing infrastructure and developing cost-effective ways of designing and building new infrastructure.

It is home to 5 engineering laboratories:

Large structures testing laboratory

This strongfloor laboratory is 30m long, 15m wide and 7m high, and hosts a wide range of testing rigs and hydraulically powered test actuators to apply realistic loading to structures and sub-structures. It also allows data-rich structural testing, using multi-axis actuation and advanced image analysis techniques to detect system behaviour.

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Testing and structures research laboratory

This materials and sub-structure testing facility features a wide range of static, cyclic and high strain rate machines to test a variety of materials across loading scales, length scales, temperature scales and strain rates. Non-contact, non-destructive techniques, especially image analysis, are used to quantify damage and defects.

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Geomechanics laboratory

This laboratory has equipment for both standard and advanced soil element testing. Apparatus includes oedometers, triaxial machines, a hollow cylinder, a resonant column and a simple shear device. We also have custom-built machines to test ballast in bulk and at single particle contacts. The laboratory is also used for assembly and testing of field instrumentation.

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Energy laboratory

This facility hosts research into renewable generation and urban energy performance. It forms a test bed for field instrumentation systems, including solar power devices and monitoring systems for buildings and the urban environment.

Geotechnical centrifuge

The centrifuge allows accelerated scale modelling of geosystems, such as earthworks, foundations and other civil engineering systems, that interact with the ground. The centrifuge spins the scale models to accelerations of up to 130 times Earth’s gravity. Experiments use state-of-the-art data acquisition, robotic manipulation and image analysis to address engineering challenges on land, by the coast or at the seafloor.


Contact us

Get in touch to find out more about the lab and how we might be able to work with you.
National Infrastructure Laboratory, Building 178, Boldrewood Innovation Campus, Southampton SO16 7QF
We’re open Monday to Friday 09:00 to 17:00 UK time

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