Lab Space at IRMACS

Lab Space collage

The IRMACS Centre's lab space is designed to encourage social interaction as well as spark interdisciplinary collaboration and research. Designed as an architecturally attractive space, the IRMACS Centre is divided up into seven lab areas, with each lab area providing research seating and computer infrastructure for 10 - 20 researchers. Each research lab is connected directly to a set of breakout rooms that are available to IRMACS researchers for ad-hoc meetings.

The Space Allocation Model

Of fundamental importance to the IRMACS research model is how it allocates space to researchers and research projects. The IRMACS Centre is designed to support more researchers than it has computer workstations. This model is based on the assumption that all IRMACS researchers are not present at the Centre at the same time. Over the past four years, the Centre has determined that roughly a 3:1 researcher to desktop ratio allows the Centre to provide a high level of infrastructure utilization while at the same time avoiding extensive conflicts for desktop and computer resources. Although this ratio may seem high, our experience shows that researchers utilize IRMACS resources in a wide variety of ways. Some researchers spend extensive amounts of time in the labs, some researchers primarily utilize the meeting room facilities (including the remote collaboration infrastructure), while others utilize the Centre's computational infrastructure. This range of use means that IRMACS can support a broad research community in a cost effective and efficient manner.

The IRMACS lab space is assigned to projects, with multiple projects being assigned to a single lab. Projects are grouped in labs based on an analysis of common research interests - not discipline. Researchers are not assigned fixed seats. Instead, research groups are assigned to a lab area that they share among their group as well as with other research groups assigned to that space. The goal of such a space allocation model is to encourage researcher interaction and foster interdisciplinary interaction.

Access to the Labs

Access to the IRMACS labs is provided to all IRMACS members. Please view the IRMACS Facility Usage Guidelines document for more information on space usage at the IRMACS Centre.