AUBURN, Ala. (EETV) - A groundbreaking ceremony for Auburn University's $22 million Advanced Structural Testing Laboratory will be held on Nov. 15.

The ceremony will take place at 1170 W. Samford Ave., on the corner of Samford Avenue and Shug Jordan Parkway.

The construction of the Advanced Structural Testing Laboratory is another giant step for the Southeast's leader in structural engineering research and instruction. It will include a high bay laboratory with specially engineered floors and walls that can handle extreme structural testing loads.

“Auburn is at the forefront of engineering education, and by providing our students’ opportunities for experiential learning, we’re ensuring our graduates emerge as industry leaders,” said Christopher B. Roberts, dean of engineering. “This outstanding facility enables our researchers to deliver innovative solutions to pressing industry demands—something Auburn does best.

The laboratory will also have a geotechnical test chamber, concrete materials research and testing laboratory and a wind testing facility. There will be spaces available for faculty and graduate students.

The 4,700-cubic-foot geotechnical test chamber is one of the few of its kind included in university laboratories across the nation. Until now, the testing offered by this chamber was only possible in the field on structured such as foundations, anchorages and towers.

In the wind testing facility, dynamic wind loads induced by hurricanes, tornadoes and other extreme wind events can be replicated.

“When you combine the strong floor and strong wall with the geotechnical testing capability and all the other materials testing capabilities, we think this will be one of the best laboratories in the country—if not the best," said Steve Taylor, associate dean for research in the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering. “If I’m a civil engineering student who wants to be a structural engineer, this is going to be one of the best places to go to school in the nation.”

The Advanced Structural Testing Laboratory will be located near Auburn University Facilities Management offices. The current structural laboratory space in the Harbert Engineering Center will be repurposed by the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering for other academic and research programs.