Karlsruhe Institute of Technology: New building for practical and future-oriented teaching at KIT

Students and teachers from mechanical engineering as well as electrical engineering and information technology at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) will experience the complete process from the first idea to the finished product in the Mechatronics Learning and Application Center (LAZ). From 2023 onwards, the LAZ will offer innovative teaching concepts as well as improved space for student learning and work as well as a project-oriented infrastructure, such as a student workshop. Today (November 15, 2021) KIT celebrated the laying of the foundation stone together with guests from business, politics and science.

After its completion, the students in the LAZ can develop and implement their ideas in a modern learning and teaching environment as well as a contemporary infrastructure. For example, you can design and test your product on the most modern digitized machine tools and with the latest software.

“The future new building for the learning and application center fits perfectly into the structure on the eastern Kaiserstrasse between the existing institutes. Large glazing facing Kaiserstraße brings light into the basement and allows citizens to look into the building. The new building presents itself as an important link between KIT and society, ”says State Secretary for Finance Gisela Splett.

“The new building of the learning and application center mechatronics enables the support of the product development from the idea to the use of a new product. This project-oriented and cross-faculty approach combines new teaching and learning concepts, research and innovation in an exemplary manner and will make an important contribution to improving academic success in technical and engineering courses, ”said the Ministerial Director in the Ministry of Science, Research and Art, Dr. Hans J. Reiter.

“The new learning and application center for mechatronics will combine research, teaching and industrial application in a unique way,” says the President of KIT, Professor Holger Hanselka. “With the LAZ, our students in product development have the special opportunity to take part in exciting research projects and to put their theoretical knowledge into practice using state-of-the-art technology.”

The Lord Mayor of Karlsruhe, Dr. Frank Mentrup emphasizes: “With today’s laying of the foundation stone, the south campus of KIT is again deliberately opening towards the city center and drawing a new image of the eastern city entrance at Durlacher Tor, which now stands for urban development, but also for the further development of KIT. The LAZ will shape: as an eye-catcher, attraction and orientation point. These and other construction activities carried out by Karlsruhe research institutions in recent years show me that the location Karlsruhe is important to them and that they feel connected to this city and its society. “

From the idea to the finished product

With the LAZ, a center for product development is being created at KIT, in which students also get to know the appropriate manufacturing techniques. “Whether a product has been designed well or badly can only be seen when it is used. That is why our students at the LAZ will be able to accompany the entire process – from the idea to the finished product, “says Sven Matthiesen, professor for device construction and machine elements at the IPEK – Institute for Product Development at KIT, who developed the usage concept at the LAZ. “You can only design well if you experience and understand the consequences of your actions in terms of function. This is important because construction competence arises from experiencing and reflecting on one’s own actions in the construction of the self-developed product. “

New building taking sustainability aspects into account: key data on the mechatronics learning and application center

The LAZ is part of the campus development in the KIT master plan 2030, which also provides for a better connection between the campus and the city center. The construction site is centrally located on the eastern Kaiserstraße, between Berliner Platz and Durlacher Tor. The planning provides for two buildings – a flat, upstream workshop building and a main building with five upper floors. A lecture hall with 274 seats, modern study areas, a prototype workshop as well as innovative communication and project rooms can be found on a usable area of ​​around 3,000 square meters. The building will have a photovoltaic system and will be certified according to the Sustainable Building Assessment System (BNB).

The state of Baden-Württemberg is the client and is investing around 20.4 million euros in the new building. The KIT contributes 1.5 million euros to the construction project costs. In addition, a donation was made by SEW-EURODRIVE in cooperation with the KIT Foundation. As a sponsor, the company TRUMPF machine tools supports the KIT in favor of the LAZ by providing money and material resources. In addition, more than 150 other supporters from society, including in particular alumni and alumnae of KIT, but also many companies and foundations, contribute to equipping the center.

As “The Research University in the Helmholtz Association”, KIT creates and imparts knowledge for society and the environment. The aim is to make significant contributions to global challenges in the fields of energy, mobility and information. To this end, around 9,600 employees work together on a broad disciplinary basis in the natural, engineering, economics, humanities and social sciences. The KIT prepares its 23,300 students for responsible tasks in society, economy and science through a research-oriented university course. The innovation activity at KIT bridges the gap between knowledge and application for social benefit, economic prosperity and the preservation of our natural foundations of life.

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