Can labs and light rail coexist? U of M will see if trains pass the test


Lots of experiments are conducted in science labs.

Some at the University of Minnesota this week will test this hypothesis: sensitive laboratory equipment on the Minneapolis campus will be unaffected by vibrations from neighboring light rail trains.

As the Minnesota Daily reports, U of M officials hope precautionary steps already taken will be enough to keep lab equipment from trembling when the trains go by.

The Central Corridor won't open until next year, but late-night test trains will run along Washington Avenue this week to monitor the effect of the trains on labs in nine university buildings.

Researchers worry equipment that relies on precision -- the imaging of microscopic particles, for example -- could be affected by the vibrations. The Daily reports the university has already relocated two labs (at a cost of more than $25 million) to put them farther away from the trains.

If this week's tests show the vibrations are disruptive, one option could be to slow the speed of the trains as they make their way through campus.

Speaking of vibrations in Minneapolis, Hennepin County raised similar concerns last week about the impending construction of a new Vikings stadium. That work will be done near the county's medical center and crime lab, both of which use equipment that could be disrupted.

Next Up

Willmar Police Department

'Errant bullet' goes through garage wall, kills Willmar man

The man was working in his garage when he was shot, witnesses said.

Screen Shot 2021-01-16 at 10.59.00 PM

Wild tie Kings with 2 seconds left, win in overtime

Another incredible finish for the Wild.

Screen Shot 2021-01-16 at 6.53.17 PM

Mike Lindell's MyPillow offering discounts using the code 'Qanon'

The Shakopee-based company is under the microscope because of the recent actions of its owner.

Surly Brewing

Facing aluminum can shortage, Surly unveils solution: 'Cantyhose'

The brewery came up with a creative way to repurpose unused cans.

Liam Robbins

Gophers stay perfect at home by crushing 7th-ranked Michigan

Liam Robbins and Marcus Carr were too much for the previously undefeated Wolverines.

police lights

Four teens arrested over robberies in Minneapolis

They teens were found in a vehicle that was taken during an earlier carjacking.

Boundary Waters/BWCA

All BWCA visitors will now have to watch three 'Leave No Trace' videos

Visitors left an "unacceptably high amount" of damage last year.


Ten fatal overdoses in past 6 weeks reported in region of northern MN

Law enforcement agencies have issued a plea to the general public.

u.s. district court minnesota - federal court minneapolis

Bracing for security threats, federal courthouses closing in Minnesota

Security is also being ramped up at the state capitol.

N95 mask

3M sues Florida company that sold 10K counterfeit N95 masks to HCMC

The Maplewood company has obtained a temporary injunction against the firm.