Large energetics facility, Porton Down

Precise design and detailed workflow processes were essential to the development of new specialist facilities alongside existing operations at Porton Down.

Large energetics facility, Porton Down

Hydrock was appointed as lead designer by the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory to design various new buildings that form the Large Energetics Facility at Porton Down.

The project was part of the Helios Infrastructure Project which provided infrastructure at the MoD’s Porton Down site to house relocated operations from the Fort Halstead site.

The new facilities include buildings with very specific technical functions such as assessment, non-destructive evaluation, explosive processing and forensic and DNA analysis. The facilities support the activities of various government departments, including the military, and approvals were required by a number of technical/licensing authorities including the RDA and Inspector of Explosives.

Precise design

The design of the site required extensive assessment to determine the critical separations and safety distances required by each building relative to the existing buildings within the New Magazine Project. The subsequent design of each building has required the development of workflow process information so that each activity can be accommodated in a logical and efficient manner.

Each stage of the design was reviewed by operational stakeholders to ensure the latest requirements and maximum flexibility were captured within the design.

Our scope of work extended from feasibility to construction, with an emphasis on complex and bespoke structural solutions and fully detailed and co-ordinated building services design all delivered to BIM level 2. Our works also included ground investigations, drainage, and highways.

Whilst the form of the buildings was dictated by their function, the appearance was developed in the context of the existing site to present a similar view to staff and visitors alike.

Hydrock employed The Bush Consultancy to provide the architectural input on the scheme.