science building
science building
science building
science building
science building
science building
science building
  • Thumbnails
  • Fullscreen
  • Go to text

Niels Bohr Building

A unifying Troposphere

"Bohr would have been proud if he had seen this project. Besides making ultra modern laboratories, the newly built winning project is also part of the answers to the new requirements for education and research facilities in the future. The project unites the professions in an open an internationally oriented way."

Ralf Hemmingsen, principal at The University of Copenhagen

Connected by a skywalk across Jagtvej, one of Copenhagen’s main roadways, the Niels Bohr Building is an iconic home for the Faculty of Science at the University of Copenhagen. Here, experts from the worlds of physics, chemistry, mathematics, and computer science come together in a transparent research community. The building’s glass façade consists of custom-made ‘pixels’, designed according to a geometry pattern that makes the building come alive as it interacts with the light during the day. The heart of the building is the Troposphere, an open atrium shaped like an infinity symbol, where researchers and students can meet in a vibrant and engaging environment, created for innovative, interdisciplinary teamwork. A wealth of social zones for informal meetings further strengthens the focus on teamwork. The departments are organized in towers around the Troposphere, which naturally divide the building’s impressive program into smaller-scale units. The design of each tower is unique, using different materials and colors to create a sense of identity and support wayfinding. All the units have access to coffee spots and small kitchenettes where the students can meet up.

Built on the Principle of Social Connections

The architectonic concept of the Niels Bohr Building is inspired by the heritage of the well-known Danish scientist Niels Bohr and the international science scene that he created in Copenhagen in the 1920s and 1930s. The Niels Bohr Institute was known as ‘the creative Copenhagen’ that attracted leading scientists from all over the world and created groundbreaking scientific results. Today, the science building houses different disciplines of science such as biology, chemistry, physics, geography, geology, physical education, computer science, and mathematics – but also modern multidisciplinary professions such as molecular biomedicine, nanotechnology, and e-science. Because of this, the Niels Bohr Building is designed with a big social centrum, the Troposphere, that functions as a knowledge-sharing loop where it is possible to exchange and seek new knowledge. The Troposphere branches into smaller loops around the inner towers. The building has no long corridors, but instead, the loops give students the possibility to seek the periphery of the social life to find serenity without being disconnected from the social community.

“The winning project completes, persuasively, the two buildings that are crossing Jagtvej, also the bid on the problem with crossing the road, is a very interesting suggestion. The proposal uses the building’s areas with a rational and flexible structure with beautiful long connected balconies and green atriums. While the requests for a space for informal meetings, interactions, and interdisciplinary collaborations are fulfilled, there are also opportunities for enclosed academic identity and immersion.” Says the jury of the project.

Highly Specialized

The building houses research and educational activities for a range of natural science disciplines encompassing chemistry, biology, and physics, which includes specialized areas like astrophysics, nanophysics, and quantum physics. Due to the wide span of academic fields, the building requires an extensive array of laboratories and research facilities, study facilities, and auditoriums.

The project includes technical laboratories, ice labs, chemistry labs, synthesis labs, GMO labs, isotope labs, and robotics labs. Additionally, it houses wet rooms, and cleans rooms of different classifications such as 100.000, 10.000, 1000, and 100. This classification scale is also known as ISO 8, 7, 6, and 5.

The Danish Building and Property Agency
55 000 m2 / 592 015 ft2
Copenhagen, Denmark
Vilhelm Lauritzen Architects, Rambøll, GHB Landscape Architects
Rasmus Hjortshøj
University of Copenhagen / Niels Bohr Institute / Department of Chemistry / Department of Science Education