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Strategies and construction materials to build a more sustainable future

Maggio 29 @ 11:30 - 14:00

Mercoledì 29 maggio alle ore 11:30 presso l’aula Fassò (Building 4A, piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32) si terrà un seminario dal titolo: “Strategies and construction materials to build a more sustainable future“, tenuto da Belén González-Fonteboa e da Sindy Seara-Paz (University of A Coruña, Spain).


Environmental degradation is one of the biggest problems mankind must confront. In the last decades, concerns about the environment have risen in developed world societies. In this context, the construction industry is one of the sectors with the highest demand for natural resources being concrete one of the most employed materials worldwide with more than six billion tons fabricated each year.

During the last decades, different strategies have been used to advance in the field of concrete sustainability. One of them is the design of concrete mixes with alternative raw materials sourced from industrial waste. In this context, many recycled concretes have been explored incorporating different types of recycled aggregates: construction and demolition wastes, mussel shells, tyre rubber, coal bottom ash, wood ash…In addition, supplementary cementitious materials (by-products from other industrial processes) have been incorporated in the concrete dosages replacing clinker, i.e. metakaolin, fly ash, silica fume, or different fillers such as granite powder, biomass ash, or wood ash.

On the other hand, it is generally agreed that frequent repairs of civil infrastructure over their service life is unsustainable. The extension of the service life of a concrete structure will contribute to its sustainability. Within the frame of this strategy, the development high high-performance concretes such as self-compacting concrete, self-healing concrete (designed with autogenous or autonomous healing), fibre-reinforced concrete and more recently 3D printing concrete have emerged as a challenge in the construction field.

The combination of both these strategies is also being explored. Self-compacting or 3D printing recycled concrete, self-healing concrete incorporating bacteria and recycled porous aggregate as internal curing water reservoirs or self-compacting fibre-reinforced concrete are some of the most promising concrete for the future.

Finally, in parallel to the development of these new concretes, to suitably characterize them, it will be necessary to use new advanced tools and techniques. Rheology to define fresh state and thixotropy, techniques based on digital correlations or the employment of artificial intelligence are some of them.

Speaker’s bio

Belén González-Fonteboa is full professor at the University of A Coruña in Spain and Sindy Seara Paz is Associate professor at the same university. They both are Civil Engineering and their main research lines are related to the analysis of the possibility of recovering by-products in the construction field: mussel shells, ashes from different industrial activities, construction and demolition wastes… The studies aim to develop new eco-concretes and mortars using innovative control systems and instrumentation, highlighting the use of rheology as a new tool to control fresh state behaviour. These research lines have been developed throughout more than 50 competitive research projects and more than 25 contracts with private companies. They have published more than 60 indexed manuscripts and more 15 books or book chapters.


Maggio 29
11:30 - 14:00
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