Tag Archives: RRSIC

RRSIC Stage 2 is named for UC Alumna Beatrice Tinsley

Beatrice Tinsley is one of the most creative and significant theoreticians in modern astronomy.

Known as “Queen of the Cosmos” Beatrice Tinsley’s work has had a profound influence on what scientists know about stars, the galaxy and the Universe itself.

Deciding by the age of 14 that she wanted to be an astrophysicist, she graduated from UC with an MSc in Physics with First Class Honours in 1961. She then completed her PhD on the evolution of universes at the University of Texas in just two years, receiving marks of 99% and 100%.

In 1974, she left Texas for a one year fellowship at the Lick Observatory of the University of California, before gaining an assistant professorship at Yale University. She became Professor of Astronomy at Yale in 1978, the same year she was diagnosed with melanoma.

She continued to publish until shortly before her death in 1981, producing over 100 scientific papers in her short 14 year academic career. She received a number of honours and accolades for her work. In 1986 the American Astronomical Society established the Beatrice M Tinsley Prize for outstanding creative contributions to astronomy or astrophysics and the University of Texas created a visiting professorship in astronomy in her honour.

The immense importance of her work was finally recognised in New Zealand in 2001 when the New Zealand Geographic Board named a mountain in her honour. Mt Tinsley stands at a proud 1,537 metres in the Kepler Mountains of Fiordland, 15 kilometres west of Te Anau.

Stage 2 of the Rutherford Regional Science and Innovation Centre (RRISC), the building that will replace von Haast (currently being demolished), will be named for Beatrice Tinsley.

Learn more about Beatrice Tinsley’s life and work.

RRSIC Stage 2 – von Haast project update

On Monday 4 September, the accessible ramp and general access from the north side of SBS will be closed off and a new accessibility ramp will be installed on the south side.

Site hoardings along the eastern side of von Haast, outside Central Lectures theatres, are scheduled to be erected during the mid-term break between 28 August and 8 September. This will significantly reduce the width of the access pathway into SBS and C Block but will not affect emergency egress.

Please advise anyone you think may be affected by these changes, and refer any queries to Project Manager Mark Homewood.

More information on the von Haast project.

Start of works on von Haast building

On 24 July the University will hand the von Haast building over to Dominion Constructors Ltd for demolition, and erection of hoardings around the site will begin.

There has been a change to the programme that was advised late last year. Demolition will now proceed from the southern to the northern end. This is to enable the contractors to gain access to the foundations at the south end of the building as soon as possible to enable early installation of the timber frame.

There will inevitably be noisy works during the demolition phase that may impact in different ways upon staff and students in the vicinity, however we are working with the contractors to ensure these impacts cause as little disruption and inconvenience as possible. We have produced a timeline of demolition and construction activities to indicate what can be expected, and when. During exam periods, we will work closely with the exam teams and the main contractor to ensure noise is reduced.

As demolition proceeds, dust will be managed on site with water as required, however it is unavoidable that some noise and vibration will be felt by those in the immediate area. If you find yourself adversely affected by noise, please consult the Health and Safety options for managing ‘Noise at Work.

As we move through the demolition phase into construction of the new building, there will be changes to pedestrian routes around the site in three stages. These can be viewed on-line here, but rest assured that north-south access will be maintained at all times throughout the project.

This represents an exciting milestone for the University as we begin work on the central building that will draw together all the elements of our magnificent new Science precinct. A process that began with construction of the new Biological Sciences building pre-earthquake, followed by refurbishment of the old Zoology building and culminating most recently, with construction of the soon-to-be completed RRSIC building at the centre of campus.

When this new Stage 2 building is completed, more than $300 million will have been invested in the precinct from University funds, Crown Capital contribution and insurance settlements, and we look forward to producing many future scientists of the same calibre as those UC has produced in the past.

You can find more details of the new building here>