Science Central

The Key

The Key

The Key is a revolutionary 'building as a lab', and is the first fabric structure to be used as a heated work space in the UK. It is the university’s first building on Science Central.

The Key is a large-scale research facility with detailed environmental and structural monitoring. It is the culmination of 15 years’ world-leading research on fabric structures at Newcastle University.

It links urban, sustainability and digital themes. This furthers our world-leading structural and materials engineering research, strengthening existing collaborations and building new ones.

As well as providing a unique venue for research, the building will also be used to showcase the Science Central vision to:

  • business and industry leaders
  • policy-makers
  • local communities
The Key

The Key Building

The building has a sustainable structure with minimal use of materials and rapid construction. The fabric and timber clad structure has been designed to have the smallest impact on the environment. This aligns with the vision for the site to become an exemplar of sustainability.

It has a high quality interior space with a curved ceiling reaching 18 metres. This makes it suited to open-plan collaborative working. It also provides an exciting space for evening events with projection on to the underside of the fabric roof.

The insulated fabric roof aims to be the first to meet current UK building regulations for energy efficiency.

The Key Building under construction

The Key photo gallery

View images of the Key:

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Construction work on The Key - October 2015

Construction work on The Key - October 2015

Construction work on The Key - October 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

Construction work on The Key - September 2015

The Key Building completed - February 2016