Could a secret ingredient make crumbling concrete a thing of the past?
Adding a bit of fungus to the initial ingredient list might be one way to endow concrete with the ability to fill in any bits of damage that occur, without the need for human intervention.
With some tweaks to the recipe, cement and concrete can be made kinder to the planet.
Cement has a huge greenhouse footprint, largely because the chemical process by which it is made releases carbon dioxide. But there are several different ways for cement to green up its act.
The new One World Trade Center building, made with high-performance concrete.
John D. Morris
Tragedies involving building collapses prompt structural engineers to figure out what happened, and how to prevent it from recurring.
Illustration of pressure sensing bacteria in soils from the ‘Computational Colloids Project’.
Carolina Ramirez-Figuroa, Luis Hernan and Martyn Dade-Robertson
Bacteria can produce their own 'buildings' so scientists are genetically engineering them to build ours.
The cracks are starting to show.
Reinforced concrete is everywhere. But unlike plain concrete, which can last for centuries, reinforced concrete can deteriorate in decades as the reinforcing bars succumb to rust.
The vehicle-based microwave system, making the streets safe again.
Zanko et al., 2016
Crews patch them, just to see these recurrent potholes come back again. New research focuses on microwaves zapping patches to make a more permanent pothole fix.