Tag: concrete

Berkeley researchers use 3D printer to make stronger, greener concrete

Berkeley researchers used a 3D printer to create polymer lattice reinforced beams. Special camera equipment shows that, when tested under bending, the beams are highly flexible and most of the cracks are blunted by the lattice.

October 13, 2020 by James Steinbauer

Researchers at UC Berkeley have developed a new way to reinforce concrete with a polymer lattice, an advance that could rival other polymer-based enhancements and improve concrete’s ductility while reducing the material’s carbon emissions.

The Berkeley team used a 3D printer to build octet


Tech It Out: Self-cleaning concrete helps prolong buildings’ life

Over 2,000 years ago, the Romans invented what we now know today as cement-based concrete. It is one of the world’s most crucial building materials, and is also the most prone to environmental risks.

With extensive exposure to air, rain and pollution, concrete structures tend to get dirty, discolored, and fractured. But scientists have found the future cement to help keep buildings safe. 

Xu Xin, a professor at the University of Science and Technology of China, said, the material’s surface can absorb water. When people reduce cement’s ability to retain water, it becomes hydrophobic.

Hydrophobic literally means “fear of water.” 


Bricks Alive! Scientists Create Living Concrete

The researchers bought Knox brand gelatin at a local supermarket and dissolved it in the solution with the bacteria. When they poured the mixture into molds and cooled it in a refrigerator, the gelatin formed its bonds — “just like when you make Jell-O,” Dr. Srubar said. The gelatin provided more structure, and worked with the bacteria to help the living concrete grow stronger and faster.

After about a day, the mixture formed concrete blocks in the shape of whatever molds the group used, including two-inch cubes, shoe box-size blocks and truss pieces with struts and cutouts. Individual two-inch cubes


LafargeHolcim launches its ‘green concrete’ in the U.S.

Klimenko Oksana | iStock | Getty Images

Concrete is essential to the development of buildings around the world, but its impact on the environment can be considerable.

Cement, for example, is a crucial component in concrete but it is energy intensive to produce and its manufacture has a big footprint when it comes to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

According to a 2018 report from Chatham House, over 4 billion metric tons of cement are produced annually. This, the policy institute said, accounts “for around 8% of global CO2 emissions.”

As concerns about the sustainability of the construction sector mount, a