Our Facilities and Laboratories
Senator Mitch McConnell Advanced Manufacturing & Robotics Laboratory
The Advanced Manufacturing and Robotics Laboratory uses varied computer numerical control (CNC) equipment, computer-aided drafting (CAD), and computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) programming to aid in manufacturing, research and training. The laboratory houses a CNC milling machine, CNC lathe, a water jet, a 3D printer, laser engraver and CNC router. The CNC milling machine uses CAD/CAM cutter paths to cut away material from parts through drilling and turning. CNC lathes allow CAD/CAM programming of tool paths for part design. The water jet uses water at high velocity to slice continuously through various materials. The 3D printer makes three-dimensional solid objects from a digital model for analysis and integration. The laser engraver marks various materials using digital graphic data. The CNC router uses various materials to create three dimensional objects and two dimensional shapes.
Architectural Sciences Laboratories
The Architectural Sciences Laboratories are comprised of multiple classrooms with computers and required software required to assist in the training of the students. The laboratory houses over 60 state of the art computer systems with annually updated software required for class. Students are able to use these laboratories when class is not in session. There is also a stocked laboratory for building architectural models throughout the semester. This gives students the hands on experience they need in industry.
The Construction Laboratories are comprised of construction, planning, mechanical and electrical systems. Supported by state-of-the-art estimating, scheduling, project control and building information modeling (BIM) software, the facilities allow full scale investigation into blue print reading, residential and commercial construction methods, building materials, construction safety and equipment and power tool operations.
The Electronics Laboratory is equipped to perform an array of analog analyses using multimeters, power instruments, oscilloscopes and signal generators. The Laboratory also allows experiments with temporary prototypes, circuit design and programmable logic controllers (PLC). The PLC equipment facilitates investigations into ladder logic concepts such as logic gates, latches, interlocks, addressing, timers and counters. In these efforts, students and faculty utilize real time programming and vertical training stations.
Food Science Laboratory
The Food Science Laboratory is a partnership between the Arthur W. Perdue Foundation, Greater Owensboro Economic Development Corporation and Western Kentucky University. This laboratory is housed at the Owensboro Centre for Business and Research and will be used for student training, formulation of new products, measuring food product quality and nutritive value and compliance with government regulations. The laboratory will also be used to perform a wide array of chemical and physical analysis tests.
Hot Metals Laboratory
The Hot Metals Laboratory is equipped to produce small sand castings using the cope and drag system of foraging. The castings can be produced either in aluminum or brass. This laboratory is also equipped to perform heat treating of metals.
Manual Machining Laboratory
The Manual Machining Laboratory offers a wide variety of metal cutting machines to perform manufacturing and repair activities. The manual machine metal cutting capabilities include drilling, milling, surface grinding, sawing and cutting. WKU faculty and students are engaged in processes to reduce the need for hazardous coolant, reduces energy consumption in the machining process and reduce the overall machining costs when compared to conventional machining methods.
Materials Testing Laboratory
The Materials Testing Laboratory has the capability to test a variety of materials. Testing capabilities of the laboratory include tensile, hardness, shear, impact, compression, bend and peel analyses. Faculty and students are planning "green" machining processes and research to find ways to reduce the need for hazardous chemicals, consume less energy and reduce machining costs.
The Woodworking Laboratory is equipped with all standard tools for creating furniture and wood prototypes. The laboratory houses major equipment such as a planer, joiner, table saws, scroll saws, disc and belt sanders, oscillating spindle sanders, wide belt sanders, band saws, a router table and many other power and hand tools.
Architecture Resource Center
A program of the Applied Research and Technology Program (ARTP), the Architectural and Manufacturing Sciences Institute provides faculty and students with the opportunity to partner with business, industry and the community. Through the Institute, WKU support the economic development of south central Kentucky by using faculty and student expertise, providing students with practical experiences in their chosen career path, customizing services to specifically meet the architectural and manufacturing needs of our clients and engaging in workforce development.
The Architectural Sciences arm of the AMS Institute offers professional design services, construction documentation production and computer-generated renderings and animations. This variety of expertise allows the students of the AMS Institute to apply the academic lessons of the classroom to real world projects, further preparing them for their future careers. The Manufacturing arm of the AMS Institute gives students the experience of working in the field using some of the latest technology available. This provides hand-on real world applications of classroom knowledge. For more information on the ARC, please click here to visit their webpage.