Physics & Astronomy Interdisciplinary Science Building (PAIS)

University of New Mexico

Albuquerque, NM


The new Physics & Astronomy Interdisciplinary Science building was designed to fill the University’s desire to create a dynamic environment to bring a variety of science disciplines and subject matters together to energize and create a culture that is integrative and stimulating for students and faculty. The building responds to both the environmental and architectural legacy of New Mexico by clustering the form around a courtyard that will act as a unifying and enjoyable exterior oasis for occupants. Directly off the courtyard is an interior living room that is a gathering area for the faculty and students, linking all parts of the complex.  Classrooms are located off this space along with a larger Colloquium classroom that will bring outside speakers to the building and other University disciplines into the building. Research team member’s offices and group focused spaces are arranged in a series of neighborhoods to foster effective intellectual collisions.

The demand for high performance, low vibration research space (criterion E (VC-E) – 3.12 microns/second, minimization of Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) and Radio Frequency Interference (RFI), combined with specific environmental condition controls, was a prime driver for the creation of a High-Performance Block that will not only meet today’s needs, but provide adaptability and flexibility to address tomorrow’s research programs.  The exterior cladding of PAIS also reflects study of how large expanses of glass could be incorporated while working with the climatic conditions of New Mexico to enhance and embrace transparency, daylight and views, and a general sense of openness and collaboration, and connection with the natural environment, while maximizing energy efficiency and minimizing carbon footprint.   

Building Facts

  • 137,000 GSF
  • Physics and Astronomy
  • Bioinformatics and Genomics
  • Electron Microscopy
  • Geospatial Data Analysis
  • Stable Isotopes
  • Human and Primate Biomedical Research

interior view