Facilities

Teaching Laboratories

Spread over two floors in a new £4m building, our new Environmental and Life Sciences laboratories can house over 200 students and are the location for both our bioscience and environmental practical classes. These practicals will provide you with hands-on experience  that puts lecture theory into practice, whilst also improving your laboratory skills. You can also use these laboratories as part of your dissertation project, for example undertaking controlled experiments or processing field samples. 

Meteorological Station

We run the Hazelrigg Meteorological Station, a unique field site and weather station located just one kilometre from the University campus. Measurements from Hazelrigg help the Met Office validate weather forecasts and climate models and you can visit the station, either as part of our Atmospheric Science modules, or as volunteer taking measurements that contribute to official Met Office records. 

Glasshouses

We have 15 glasshouse modules to provide flexible growth facilities to support our plant science and ecological research. Our glasshouses allow us to manage growth conditions, supplement daylight and control irrigation and we use the facility for everything from studying leaf and root physiology to taking crops to harvest. You will have the opportunity to visit the glasshouses if you’re taking a related module or researching a relevant dissertation topic. 

Field and Laboratory Facilities

The final year dissertation provides you with the opportunity to work alongside our ongoing research projects, often providing you with direct experience of research-level field and laboratory equipment. You may have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience with cutting-edge analytical equipment, including mass spectrometers and ion chromatographs to analyse the chemical composition of water or soil samples, in-situ fluorimeters to analyse algae living in streams and rivers, or gas chromatographs to analyse greenhouse gases released to the atmosphere.

Augmented Reality Flood Simulator

We have invested in augmented reality tools to help you understand how mountains control the downslope accumulation of runoff to produce river floods. Our augmented reality system enables mountains, rivers and flood detention ponds to be moulded in sand and to be augmented in real-time with rainfall and runoff events simulated on the 3D surfaces. This facility is directly linked to our hydrology teaching and research on flooding. It can show where floods are likely to occur and how we can add detention ponds on farms or in streams to reduce the likelihood of flooding in downstream communities.

Confocal Microscope

Our confocal microscopes are used to obtain optically pure images and 3-D computer reconstructions of many types of sample including living cells and tissue sections of both plants and animals. Cell and tissue morphology can be studied using fluorescent probes and multiple fluorophores can be employed to investigate the colocalisation of cellular molecules within cells. 

Electron Microscope

We use both scanning and transmission electron microscopes as part of our research into Biophotonics and Biomedicine. These allow you to view objects magnified millions of times and images in air and fluids under controlled environmental and temperature conditions. You will have the opportunity to access these advanced facilities if you are researching a relevant topics as part of your final year project. 

Geographical Information Systems

You will have access to the latest versions of GIS and Image Processing software, as well as a wide variety of digital data sources. We also have a dedicated GIS Technician who offers personal support if you are using GIS as part of your coursework or dissertation project.

Microphenotron

Our Microphenotron is a powerful new tool for agrochemical development. It enables the screening of natural or synthetic compounds for their effects on plant growth and development by combining specialist robotics, Phytostrips and image analysis software. It is unique in being able to combine high-throughput robotic screening with detailed analysis of the effects of chemical treatments on both root system architecture and shoot development.