The University of Oklahoma Cancer Institute
The University of Oklahoma Cancer Institute is one of only three sites in the nation that offers proton therapy with the MEVION S250 system. When Manhattan Construction Group was hired to build the seven-story hospital, they entrusted Lithko with all the concrete work, including two vaults for the proton-generating accelerators and four additional vaults for conventional radiation therapy accelerators.
Proton vaults, extending 12 feet below the basement, were the last part designed and the last bid package awarded. To avoid a three-year wait, we worked with the general contractor and design team to redesign the foundations and vault connections to allow construction of the hospital first.
The proton vaults enable the proton machine to be in the room with the patient. The machine is supported by two 8,000-pound steel embeds and rotates 180 degrees around the patient, who is on a cantilevered cast-in-place deck. The vaults were constructed within a tolerance of 1/8 inch from isocenter and consisted of eight 14-feet-wide, 34-feet-tall concrete walls. Special precautions were required during curing to ensure we adhered to the project’s thermal modeling plan. The aggregate in the concrete was 3-plus inches, requiring a combination of concrete conveyor and crane/bucket methods to place the concrete. The largest wall pour was over 1,200 cubic yards.
We were told by the team that later installed the proton machine that of the seven facilities being constructed around the country at the time, ours had the best quality, was the cleanest and had the tightest tolerance.