Institute of Optics Group Plans Expansion
Paula M. Powell
The University of Rochester in New York has scheduled the groundbreaking for its BME/Optics building for Oct. 10. The ceremony for the combined biomedical engineering and optics research facility will take place during the Optical Society of America's annual meeting, which will run from Oct. 9 through 14 at Rochester's Riverside Convention Center.
According to alumni Stephen D. Fantone, president of Optikos Corp. in Cambridge, Mass., and Charles R. Munnerlyn, who are chairmen of fund raising for the $30 million expansion, the university anticipates that the greater part of the funding will come from private organizations, government sources and alumni. Munnerlyn helped to fuel the funding process last year with a $3 million contribution to the project. Besides contributing his time, Fantone made a recent contribution of $250,000.
The new building, which is scheduled for completion in the summer of 2006, will be connected to the Wilmot building, which houses existing university optics research labs and classrooms. Jack Kreckel, senior associate vice president of university advancement, reported that optics-related activities will account for half of the 91,000 square feet of space in the new facility. Just as critical as expanded optics opportunities, though, will be the synergy that Kreckel expects to develop between researchers in both biomedical engineering and optics as they interact in shared laboratory space.
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