Technical Sheet

Technical Sheet

New-build / Public Operation

CNRS (National Center for Scientific Research)

Construction cost 
€65.5 million, excluding tax

Net floor area 
18, 000 m2

2013 – 2018



Clean room (2,900 m² useful floor area), laboratories and offices (6,996 m² useful floor area), training room (214 m² useful floor area), administration (1,485 m² useful floor area), logistics and maintenance (545 m² useful floor area), reception (1,256 m² useful floor area), 232 parking places.



Atelier d’Architecture Michel Rémon

Landscape architect
Signes paysages

Alhyange acoustique

Vibration engineering


Electromagnetic engineering




Copyright : Doug & Wolf

C2N Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Research Center / CNRS (National Center for Scientific Research)

Palaiseau - Plateau de Saclay

Playing with Scale

The compactness and extreme simplicity of the sketch produced by the architect reflect the meager amount of area available for building. Paying tribute to the search for the infinitely small, the beauty of its simple line intentionally erases the scale of the elements but reveals an internal organization that is rigorously structured. The complexity and precision of the works carried out internally are thus housed in a building of a deliberately serene architecture and an obvious functionality.

An intangible object simulating weightlessness, this site will weigh heavily in the development of the Plateau de Saclay. Featuring a clean room with 3,000 m² of useful floor area (soon to be one of the largest in France), the combining of the technological and human resources of the Institute of Fundamental Electronics and the Photonics and Nanostructures Laboratory, this complex in the Ile-de-France of the nanoscience and nanotechnology center will be France’s largest academic center.

Three “pillars” support the architectural philosophy of this temple of research

Impeccably “clean” and dedicated to invisible materiality, the building stands out as an emblem of advanced technology. While it is an astonishing rational working tool that can protect research from vibrations and magnetic fields, it also offers an ergonomic, user-friendly space for the C2N scientific community.

Like a living artery, the research street brings together all the laboratories and the clean room. Punctuated by patios bathed in light, it plays the role of a “domestic agora” for these premises, isolated from the outside world, and provides them with the serendipity that researcher expect.

“From a distance, the building covered in silk-screened glass creates the illusion of escaping the laws of gravity. The juxtaposition of volumes without apparent contact creates a subtle ambiguity of scales.”

C2N Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Research Center / CNRS (National Center for Scientific Research)