Digital Concrete Processing

Our major objective is to develop expertise on concrete technology within NCCR projects. It covers a wide range of topics, from which this report highlights the main outcomes. Scientifically, a particular effort was placed on understanding the structural build-up of cementitious materials over time, something which, for concrete, conditions the success or failure of most digital fabrication processes. Other topics universally considered important to this new field are covered, such as durability, and to this end examination of ingress of aggressive species such as chlorides is of prime importance.

Another universal problem regarding digital fabrication with concrete is that of reinforcement, and it has been noted that this new field requires reinforced concrete structure designers to rethink reinforcement strategies. To that end, we focus on unique methods of reinforcement, particularly fibre reinforcement, as well as minimised reinforcement in the form of compression-only structures in collaboration with the knitted formwork project.

To strengthen the visibility and knowledge transfer of the NCCR in this field, we decided to follow up on the very successful workshop held in Zurich in January 2017 by hosting Digital Concrete 2018, the “1st RILEM International Conference on Concrete and Digital Fabrication.” This will be held conjointly with Rob|Arch 2018, the leading conference for robotics in architecture. By bringing together both events we will foster exchange between multiple communities, making a strong statement about the multidisciplinarity of our NCCR.

Principal Investigators: Prof. Dr. Robert J. FlattProf. Fabio GramazioProf. Matthias KohlerProf. Dr. Jonas BuchliProf. Benjamin Dillenburger

Main Collaborators: Lex Reiter,Dr. Timothy Wangler

Extended Collaborators: Dr. Ena Lloret Fritschi,Norman Hack, Alexander Nikolas Walzer, Dr. Jaime Mata-Falcón, Andrei Jipa, Mariana Popescu, Andreas Reusser

External Collaborators: Nicolas Ruffray, Mathias Bernhard


Flatt, Robert J., Timothy Wangler, Lex Reiter, Ena Lloret-Fritschi, Fabio Gramazio, Matthias Kohler, Linus Mettler, Falk Wittel, Mathias Bernhard, Benjamin Dillenburger, Jonas Buchli, Jaime Mata Falcón and Walter Kaufmann. 2016.“Digital Fabrication with Concrete:Challenges and Opportunities.” Keynote lecture 8th International RILEM Symposium on Self-Compacting Concrete, Washington, DC, USA, 16–19 May 2016.

Hack, Norman, Timothy Wangler, Jaime Mata-Falcón, Kathrin Dörfler, Nitish Kumar, Alexander Nikolas Walzer, Konrad Graser, Lex Reiter, Heinz Richner, Jonas Buchli, Walter Kaufmann, Robert J. Flatt, Fabio Gramazio, and Matthias Kohler. 2017. “Mesh Mould:An On Site, Robotically Fabricated, Functional Formwork.” Accepted for 2nd Concrete Innovation Conference, Tromso, Norway,5–8 March 2017.

Lloret-Fritschi, Ena, Lex Reiter, Timothy Wangler, Fabio Gramazio, Matthias Kohler, and Robert J. Flatt. 2017. “Smart Dynamic Casting: Slipforming with Flexible Formwork – Inline Measurement and Control.” Accepted for 2nd Concrete Innovation Conference,Tromso, Norway, 5–8 March 2017.

Reiter, Lex, Timothy Wangler, Nicolas Roussel, and Robert J. Flatt. 2016. “Distinguishing Flocculation and Hydration Effects on the Thixotropy of Cement Pastes.” In 8th International RILEM Symposium on Self-Compacting Concrete, Washington, DC, USA, 16–19 May 2016.

Reiter, Lex, Rene Käßmann, Amir Reza Shahab, Timothy Wangler, and Robert J. Flatt. 2015. “Strategies to Wake up Sleeping Concrete.” Proceedings of the 14th International Congress on the Chemistry of Cement.

Reiter, Lex, Marta Palacios, Timothy Wangler, and Robert J. Flatt. 2015. “Putting Concrete to Sleep and Waking It up with Chemical Admixtures.” Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Superplasticizers and Other Chemical Admixtures in Concrete 302:145–154.

Schultheiss, Marc, Timothy P. Wangler, Lex Reiter, and Robert J. Flatt. 2016.“Feedback Control of Smart Dynamic Casting through Formwork Friction Measurements,” In 8th International RILEM Symposium on Self-Compacting Concrete, Washington, DC, USA,16–19 May 2016.

Wangler, Timothy, Ena Lloret, Lex Reiter, Norman Hack, Fabio Gramazio, Matthias Kohler, Mathias Bernhard, Benjamin Dillenburger, Jonas Buchli, Nicolas Roussel, and Robert Flatt. 2016. “Digital Concrete: Opportunities and Challenges.” RILEM Technical Letters1: 67–75, doi: 10.21809/rilemtechlett.2016.16.

Wangler, Timothy, Lex Reiter, Ena Lloret-Fritschi, Norman Hack, Matthias Kohler, Fabio Gramazio, Benjamin Dillenburger, Mathias Bernhard, Jonas Buchli, and Robert J. Flatt. 2016. “Hydration Control for Digital Fabrication with Concrete.” Invited presentation at One-Day International Symposium on 3D Printing of Concrete, IIT Madras, Chennai, India, 8 August 2016.

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