- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 24 Nov 2020
In April 2018, scientists at Exeter University announced they had developed a new, pioneering technique for incorporating graphene into traditional concrete production. The result of such a technique is the production of a stronger and more water-resistant type of concrete which they believe could revolutionise construction.
The technique uses nanoengineering technology to introduce the graphene into the concrete mix; suspending atomically thin graphene in water-yielding concrete. The resultant composite material is twice as strong, four times more water resistant, and with a reduced carbon footprint in comparison with other conventional concretes.
The researchers believe that this technique has the potential to be scaled up at relatively low cost to meet modern production requirements and could pave the way for other nanomaterials to be used to enhance the performance of concrete.
The researchers at Exeter University have published a paper ‘Ultrahigh Performance nanoengineered Graphene-Concrete Composites for Multifunctional Applications’ in the journal of Advanced Functional Materials. Ref https://doi.org/10.1002/adfm.201705183
Professor Monica Craciun, co-author, said:
“This new composite material is an absolute game-changer. Not only is it stronger and more durable, but it is also more resistant to water, making it uniquely suitable for construction in areas which require maintenance work and are difficult to be accessed .
“Yet perhaps more importantly, by including graphene we can reduce the amount of cement required to make concrete by around 50% – leading to a significant reduction of 446kg/tonne of the carbon emissions.”
“This ground-breaking research is important as it can be applied to large-scale manufacturing and construction. The industry has to be modernised by incorporating not only off-site manufacturing, but innovative new materials as well. Finding greener ways to build is a crucial step forward in reducing carbon emissions around the world and so help protect our environment as much as possible. It is the first step, but a crucial step in the right direction to make a more sustainable construction industry for the future.”
 Find out more
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
Featured articles and news
A review of the HES pilot project.
Organisation alerts membership to findings of IHBC research.
Four outstanding professionals recognised.
Sustainable flooring from super strong grass.
Organisation presents reactions from industry leaders.
New infrastructure bank to be based in the North of England.
Fairer, faster, greener. A summary of the key points.
Strategies to help provide safer working conditions.
Protecting flora, fauna and the other natural features of Scotland.
Architecture considered somewhere between 'sublime and beautiful'.
Polish piano factory revived through an energy-oriented tune up.
Dynamic architectural approach sets out to restore and improve the environment.
Entries accepted from 1 December 2020 to 14 April 2021.