Government, Healthcare, Research
The lab houses research, fabrication, and display space for the Balloon-borne Large Aperture Sub-millimeter Telescope (BLAST), a highly sensitive telescope helping University of Pennsylvania astronomers and international researchers study stars and galaxies. Astronomers assemble the telescope before each mission, and the 1,200-square foot laboratory aids in this work. The 42-foot high space includes an architecturally exposed steel structure, and a crane beam that spans from the interior to the exterior via 35-foot high motorized glass barn doors. The beam and doors allow the telescope to move outdoors for calibration with the sky. Engineers designed the structural steel braced-frame to prevent torsional movements when the crane is active and to accommodate the weight of the suspended telescope.