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Remarks at the Groundbreaking Ceremony for New Campbell Hall
The Center for Integrated Precision and Quantum Measurement (CIPQM)
University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, CA
Stella Fiotes, NIST Chief Facilities Management Officer
May 14, 2012

I am very pleased to be here this morning representing NIST and our Director, Dr. Pat Gallagher, to help celebrate the beginning of work on the New Campbell Hall.

We have—I guess you’d have to say—a subterranean interest in New Campbell Hall, as co-funders of your basement. More precisely, of the Center for Integrated Precision and Quantum Measurement. Have we agreed on a way to pronounce the acronym, by the way?

The $11 million we contributed to the project was one of the first awards we made under our Construction Grant Program, which was set up to help fund new scientific research facilities. It was one of three projects chosen from 93 applicants requesting over $1billion back in 2008. Needless to say, it was a pretty stiff competition.

Both precision measurement and quantum-level phenomena are of great interest to NIST, and we look forward to the new capabilities this center will offer the researchers here at Berkeley.

The planned research activities, ranging from ultrahigh-precision gravitational field detectors to high-precision, solid-state magnetometers, and nanoscale optical metrology, dovetail nicely with our own work not only at NIST itself, but in our ongoing collaborations at JILA in Boulder, Colorado, and the Joint Quantum Institute at the University of Maryland.

Of course, there’s a lot of ongoing interaction between NIST and the University of California at Berkeley already. I know your students and faculty members are regular users of our Cold Neutron Research Facility, for example; at least a couple dozen over the last few years. We hope to see even more interactions, likely involving this new center, in the future.

I don’t know this personally, of course, but if Berkeley is anything like my school, I imagine there are some bittersweet feelings involved in tearing down the old Campbell Hall. A sense of the loss of a certain amount of history, maybe. Along with the loss of unairconditioned lecture halls, probably.

I would console you that the New Campbell Hall will soon enough be making its own history, particularly in the Center for Integrated Precision and Quantum Measurement. And we at NIST will be very proud to have played some part in that.

Thank you, and I look forward to coming back for the dedication of this fine center soon.