Project Detail

Advanced Structures and Composites Center

Orono, ME

Scope of Work

Cianbro served as Construction Manager for the Offshore Wind Laboratory, a three-story, 38,000-square-foot expansion to the existing facility, formerly known as the Advanced Engineering Wood Composites (AEWC) facility. The expansion included 6,886 square feet for labs, offices and mechanical, 6,547 square feet for warehousing, and 24,567 square feet for high bay testing space. The high bay testing space includes a heavily reinforced concrete reaction structure (test stand) and a heavily reinforced concrete floor slab (strong floor) for wind blade testing. The reaction frame consists of a steel structure anchored to the 4-foot thick concrete slab capable of applying 150-ton and 500-ton loads repeatedly using a series of hydraulic actuators.

Project Details

  • Construction of a 2,000-cubic-yard concrete test stand in a 27-foot square by 53-foot-tall frame extending 30 feet into the ground
  • Placement of a 924-square-foot, 4-foot thick, reaction floor with basement to mount the 500-ton reaction frame and actuator for blade testing
  • Installation of an environmental chamber capable of reaching -50 degrees to +50 degrees Celsius with 100 percent humidity, a salt fog chamber, a saltwater immersion pool, and over 1,900 strong floor-embedded anchor assemblies
  • Placement of building foundation walls with typical spread footings, rebar, and slab-on-grade
  • Placement of a 100-foot by 30-foot by 12-foot blade tip pit – a basement that allows the blade to go below the floor elevation when it is being tested and/or stressed
  • Erection of a pre-engineered metal building
  • Placement of a 23-ton embedded steel plate in the face of the test stand for mounting windmill blades
  • The use and application of green building practices to assist the University of Maine in obtaining LEED Gold status
    • 95% waste stream diversion
    • Installation of skylights, solar panels, and increased insulation to aid in the reduction of heating and cooling costs

Lean, Innovative, and Unique Project Solutions

The tight project schedule, along with the deep excavation and ledge removal needed for the test stand, required precise project planning. Detailed coordination of the 31 trade partners working simultaneously and in close proximity to each other was critical to this project's success. Additionally, this is the first LEED Gold Certified Building at the University of Maine, Orono.


AGC Build Maine Award