To investigate the effect of environmental variables such as temperature and circadian light cycles, it is often necessary to be able to replicate natural conditions in a controlled environment. The Climate Control Chambers run by the Centre for Behaviour and Evolution offer the possibility of doing this. The facility offers four chambers (4.2m deep x 2.5m wide x 2.2m high) in which temperature can be independently controlled between -10°C and +30°C, with an error of less than 2°C either way.
Daily temperature profiles can be programmed to mimic natural circadian changes. The light cycle inside the chambers can also be programmed to any circadian pattern, including dawn and dusk. The humidity in the chambers is controlled to a degree, but not very finely.
The chambers are designed to be completely washable on the inside, and there is access to water, as well as access to run cables into them. The doors contain one-way observation windows to monitor the inside of the chambers without needing to open the insulating doors. The chambers are located in a secure area on the main campus.
|Dr Tom Smulders|