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Project Thumbnails

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Project Summary

The Food Science and Human Nutrition Pilot Plant (FSHN-PP) is an essential learning laboratory/classroom that transforms students into career-prepared professionals. Courses taught in the FSHN-PP cannot be conducted in any other classroom on campus due to the specialized content and equipment required to support focused training. A modernized FSHN-PP offers unique learning opportunities in a state-of-the-art facility that resembles future work environments in industry, academia and government settings.

Notably, this facility supports undergraduate and graduate research training. Annually, approximately 50 students in FSHN, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, Microbiology and Chemical Engineering, among other fields, are trained in the FSHN-PP. Collaborations with additional departments and units were previously restricted by the outdated conditions of the facility.

The FSHN-PP contains highly specialized equipment so as to resemble industry work environments of acting food scientists. The laboratory design needed to be flexible to support plug-and-play equipment utilization which allows the equipment location to change within the two-story facility.

As the primary teaching laboratory space for the critical Food Processing II course, FSHN-PP serves approximately 40 students. In addition, the senior capstone food product development course, where students create new products, is undertaken here. This course serves approximately 75 future food science and technology professionals, many of whom become corporate leaders, or may solve the grand challenge of feeding nine billion individuals by the year 2050. In many respects, the FSHN-PP is the Department’s most essential classroom. Students solve real world problems in a modernized facility, creating a transformative learning experience and one that will position University of Illinois graduates ahead of others.

Location

Urbana, Illinois

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Design Vignette

Modern infrastructure supports “plug-and-play” equipment utilization allowing for flexible equipment location within the two-story facility.