2010, February 26 - Cham, Switzerland. The sensational Rolex Learning Center of the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) was opened on February 22, 2010. The Japanese architectural firm SANAA has designed a low-rise building of 170 meters in length whose wave-like, flowing architectural style creates a dynamic interplay between atmospheric spaces and light-flooded courtyards. In fall 2009, in cooperation with polyright, a leading supplier of multifunctional chip cards, Bibliotheca installed a system-specific RFID solution that meets the contemporary needs of the library and its special architecture in a progressive manner.
With a total surface area of almost 15,000 m2, the building is housing the campus library and research and education center, as well as exhibition spaces, a cafeteria and restaurant and various functional spatial units for research and interdisciplinary exchange. The 6,000 m2 library combines the holdings of ten individual libraries and Bibliotheca's installation is appropriately spectacular. One single and one quadruple BiblioGate secure the central entrance area, which measures 15 meters in width. Two double gates flank the other entrances. As in the entire building, the floor is not even but waved. Five height-adjustable Orion Biblio SelfChecks harmonize perfectly with the almost surreal interior landscape. The use of the new centralized BiblioCockpit management console complete with Next Generation software goes without saying for a state-of-the-art library. Full integration in the Aleph environment ensures unlimited operating efficiency. "In spite of the tight time frame we pulled out all the stops to be able to provide the full version of our latest software and the BiblioCockpit for French-speaking users," said Manuela Kettler, Bibliotheca's project manager.
The BiblioChip RFID system has been in use in the EPFL architecture library since March 2008, where it is much appreciated as user-friendly and functional. As in the Rolex Learning Center, polyright also installed an RFID-based access control system there.
Due to the way that it is set to tackle technological, environmental and architectural challenges, the new building is undeniably an international prestige project. Here again Bibliotheca demonstrates its technological leadership and professional project management. As the new centerpiece of the EPFL campus, the Rolex Learning Center will enhance the reputation of the Technical University as one of the most productive and innovative scientific institutions.