- Journal Article
Rights / licenseCreative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International
Concrete construction harms our environment, making it urgent to develop new methods for building with less materials. Structurally efficient shapes are, however, often expensive to pro- duce, because they require non-standard formworks, thus, standard structures, which use more material than is often needed, remain cheaper. Digital fabrication has the potential to change this paradigm. One method is Digital Casting Systems (DCS), where the hydration of self-compacting concrete is controlled on the fly during production, shortening the required setting time and reduc- ing hydrostatic pressure on the formwork to a minimum. This enables a productivity increase for standard concrete production. More importantly, though, it enables a rethinking of formworks, as the process requires only cheap thin formworks, thus, unlocking the possibility to produce opti- mised structural members with less bulk material and lower environmental cost. While DCS has already proven effective in building structural members, this process faces the challenge of moving into industry. This paper covers the next steps in doing so. First, we present the benchmark and expectations set by the industry. Second, we consider how we comply with these requirements and convert our fast-setting self-compacting mortar mix into a coarser one. Third, we present the next generation of our digital processing system, which moves closer to the industrial requirements in terms of size and the control system. Finally, two prototypes demonstrate how DSC: (a) increases standard bulk production by 50% and (b) can be cast into ultra-thin formworks. We discuss the results and the short-term industrial concerns for efficiency and robustness, which must be ad- dressed for such a system to be fully implemented in industry. Show more
Journal / seriesMaterials
Pages / Article No.
Subjectprocessing; concrete; formwork; robotics; set on demand; digital concrete
Organisational unit03891 - Flatt, Robert J. / Flatt, Robert J.
03708 - Gramazio, Fabio / Gramazio, Fabio
03709 - Kohler, Matthias / Kohler, Matthias
02284 - NFS Digitale Fabrikation / NCCR Digital Fabrication
MoreShow all metadata