Location University of Adelaide, Waite Campus SA
Project Completion 2010
Project Size 4,500m2
Project Description The University of Adelaide Plant Accelerator, awarded the Keith Neighbour Award for Commercial Architecture by the South Australian chapter of the Australian Institute of Architects, commenced operation in 2010 as Australia’s largest research greenhouse.
The facility was designed by H2o architects with Phillips Pilkington Architects and covers 4,500 square metres across two levels, with an upper greenhouse level for plant growth and access to automated plant imaging stations, over a lower support area including plant growth chambers, potting, germination and research laboratories and administrative offices.
The Plant Accelerator addresses a fundamental infrastructure bottleneck in crop research and plant breeding in Australia. It is a national research facility, able to process 160,000 plants a year, by providing automated facilities for high volume plant growth and analysis, to support existing research facilities on the Waite Campus. The capacity for large water and power requirements is tempered by sustainable initiatives including large roof water catchments and mechanical plant water recycling.
Specialised and technologically rich greenhouses called Smarthouses and Imaging Rooms are located within part of the upper level, enclosed in a proprietary greenhouse system utilising an external 16mm Plexiglas cladding. Specialist conveyor, imaging and scanilizer equipment is installed in these rooms.