The E. A. Fernandez IDEA Factory serves as a force multiplier for addressing society’s grand challenges, and promotes the values, skills and experiences that great problem-solvers need to do it: innovation, collaboration and creativity; entrepreneurship; and interdisciplinary design. The IDEA Factory is the signature resource within Maryland's Technology Enterprise Institute, widely recognized for catalyzing technology-focused economic growth in the region and nation.

Through the “eyes” of a drone, fly around and inside Maryland Engineering’s newest competitive advantage.

Donor Recognition

We extend our sincerest gratitude to each and every donor who has made the vision of the E.A. Fernandez IDEA Factory a reality.

square feet of project
lab spaces

First floor

Tom & Susan Scholl Center for Student Innovation
Dedicated to student innovation, competition, and entrepreneurship, the Tom & Susan Scholl Center for Student Innovation includes a student co-working, design, and fabrication space; a rapid prototyping lab; a pop-up innovation lab; the Startup Shell; and the IDEA Factory Director’s office.

The ALEx Garage
Focusing on teams proposing solutions to important problems, the Garage will offer space to rotating groups developing prototypes and working to bring them to market.

Angel P. Bezos ’69 Rapid Prototyping Lab
Equipped with 3D printers and other in-demand gear, the lab joins a community of campus makerspaces that inspired Make:magazine to spotlight UMD as one of the nation's "best maker schools."

Startup Shell
The popular student business incubator now has a spacious home with moveable whiteboards, tables, and couches.

Second floor

IDEA Central Café
The glass-enclosed café on the second floor is a new hub for the engineering community.

Pedro Wasmer '62 Conference Room
A modular conference room for meetings, ideating sessions, or other events. In this room, Terps can brainstorm as one or two groups, or gaze meditatively at the campus views through the tall windows.

Ortanez Family Terrace
Located on the second floor adjacent to IDEA Central Café, this is a meeting point for faculty, staff, and students. Connected to the Kim Plaza below, it extends the outdoor space available for events and general gatherings.

Randy Ortanez ‘82 Innovation Bridge
This skybridge connects the IDEA Factory to the second floor of the Jeong H. Kim Engineering Building.

Third floor

Robotics and Autonomy Lab
Home of the Maryland Robotics Center, this multi-purpose robotics lab hosts motion capture technology, assembly and testing areas and a range of robots including Spot robotic dog (Boston Robotics) and Husky (Clearpath Robotics). It also supports capstone projects for the Robotics and Autonomous Systems Minor.

Robert J. Flanagan Collaboration Corner
Located in the glow of the IDEA Factory's famous dichroic glass, the collaboration space allows students to hang out and study next to the Robotics and Autonomy Lab.

Basement level

TDF Foundation Quantum Technology Center Laboratories
With state-of-the-art laboratories to isolate delicate experiments, this home to the Quantum Technology Center is where students and researchers focus on translating quantum physics into real-world translational technologies to address some of society's toughest challenges.

Microscopy Lab
Part of the Maryland NanoCenter, the lab will house an atomic resolution aberration corrected electron microscope with full analytical capabilities.

Fourth floor

Lockheed Martin Rotorcraft Labs
A new home for the Alfred Gessow Rotorcraft Center (AGRC), one of three national rotorcraft centers of excellence. Research in the AGRC includes aerodynamics, flight mechanics, vibrations, structures, computational fluid dynamics, acoustics, and other topics. The lab houses a monorail hoist to haul heavy equipment up from the ground through large double doors on the building’s side.