F.W. Olin Science Hall Building Image
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F.W. Olin Science Hall

Established: 
1994
Current Use: 

It is home to the departments of physics and astronomy, geosciences, and mathematics and computer science.

History & Architecture

Funded by a $6.1 million grant from the F. W. Olin Foundation, the elaborate simulated Georgian idiom building was completed in 1994 and is built of brick and limestone. It houses a 42-seat planetarium and laser spectrometer. It is home to the departments of physics and astronomy, geosciences, and mathematics and computer science and contains 44.000 square feet of space. Among the building's more interesting interior decorations is the "Penrose Tiling" on the main stairwell. The tiling design is made with only two different types of tile laid out so that even if extended to the entire plane, the pattern would never repeat in any direction. The mathematics and computer science area also displays poster-sized blowups of art done by George Stibitz, a computer pioneer and Denison faculty member, which is some of the earliest known computer art. A student art project by David Nassar '07 - the Mona Lisa made from dice - also decorates Olin's walls. In the department of geosciences an array of geologic maps and imagery are posted.

Central Campus
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The F.W. Olin Science Hall 42-seat planetarium features a computerized Zeiss projector, a laser spectrometer, computer clusters and an enormous collection of minerals, rocks and fossils.
Building Style: 
An elaborate simulated Georgian idiom in brick and limestone.
Al Weik

Al Weik should be floating on air: this Denison senior recently won two national swimming championship events. But he’s also a person who is very grounded—in geosciences.

Assistant professor of physics Steven Olmschenk

In the lower level of Olin Hall, a physics professor and his students are working on research in the field of quantum information, which could lead to an encryption process that is theoretically unbreakable.