Education, Life Science + Research

Anatomy Facility, University of Melbourne

Education, Life Science + Research

Anatomy Facility, University of Melbourne


The University of Melbourne, Parkville, VIC


The University of Melbourne


Scarborough Architects


Mechanical, Electrical, Fire Protection, Hydraulics, Information + Communication Technology (ICT), Audio Visual, Acoustics

The University of Melbourne’s Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience is at the forefront of scientific research on the human body in health and disease. Recognised for its innovation in teaching and medical research of neuroscience, metabolism and diabetes as well as cell biology, the department’s facilities are integral to the employment of novel and innovative research methods.

This project, driven by a significant reduction in the exposure limit to formaldehyde imposed by Safe Work Australia (SWA), comprises upgraded anatomy teaching facilities within the medical building (BN 181) and is intended to provide the university with operational readiness to allow the facility to continue its operations when the new exposure limits are ratified.

The project, one of the first nationally to address the new SWA requirements, involves:

  • The refurbishment of Level 4 West to provide a new anatomy teaching laboratory replacing the existing facility on the same level
  • New HVAC systems that incorporate high air change, single pass air, designed for ventilation effectiveness
  • Major upgrade of HVAC systems to the existing support areas comprising embalming, preparation and cold storage
  • Working with a Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) sub-consultant to model differing scenarios to understand key drivers to maintain airborne concentration levels below the new limits
  • A real life mock-up incorporating calibrated formaldehyde sensors mounted in the breathing zone to verify outcomes from the CFD study in real working conditions

Unique features, challenges and outcomes of this project were:

  • Re-purposing an ageing building to accommodate complex and sensitive teaching functions
  • Incorporation of high (single pass) air changes rates and objectionable exhaust air streams that discharge above the facility
  • Extensive infrastructure assessment to determine ability to achieve the new exposure limitations
  • Interpretation of new, ambiguous and unsubstantiated guidelines with close collaboration with client and users

To learn more about the project get in touch:

Director / National Education Sector Lead

Russell Evans

P: +61 3 9521 1195
M: +61 411 358 090
E: [email protected]

Director / Health & Life Sciences Sector Lead

Nikki Beckman

P: +61 3 9521 1195
M: +61 425 773 885
E: [email protected]

Technical Director - Laboratory and Life Science Specialist / London / Australia

Nigel Doxey

P: +44 7795 029 614 / +61 3 9521 1195
M: +44 7795 029 614 / +61 431 970 972
E: [email protected]

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