New Materials and
Material Compounds in Civil Engineering

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Today, it is above all new quality features that are demanded of building materials and structures. These include multifunctional requirements, e.g. for facades and other space-enclosing building components, increased demands on durability, and the optimization of energy use in the manufacture and operation of structures. In view of the fact that these requirements are also placed on the existing building fabric, "building in the existing fabric" is of particular importance. In addition to the functionality of building materials during their service life, their reusability and recyclability play an increasingly important role. Often, the shortened term "sustainable building" is placed above these comprehensive topics. In this sense, the focus "New Materials and Material Composites" deals with the "hardware" of sustainable construction.

The focus is supported by the specialist areas

  • Materials of construction and construction chemistry
  • Structural preservation and timber construction
  • Solid construction
  • Steel and composite construction
  • Building mechanics/building dynamics
  • Construction and maintenance of traffic routes

The main areas of work

  • New high performance concretes
  • Adhesive bonds and fiber composites in civil engineering
  • Earthquake resistant construction and substructure engineering and
  • Materials modeling

have been supported by public and private research funds in recent years. Currently, other promising areas of work include the topics of

  • Renewable raw materials for load-bearing components and
  • Reuse and recycling of building materials in traffic route construction
  • Nanotechnology for building materials

fits excellently into the focal point.

In principle, all individual topics of the focal point are worked on in a network within the Institute of Structural Engineering. Where the issue requires it, e.g. in the case of economic questions and in connection with questions of sustainability, the cooperation possibilities within the department - for example in close cooperation of the IKI with the Institute for Construction Economics, the Institute for Water, Waste and Environment or the Institute for Transportation  - are used.

The focus on "New Materials and Material Composites" also enables the expansion of the already started cooperative collaboration on design issues with the Department of ASL, with the Department of Mechanical Engineering, for example, with regard to manufacturing and joining techniques suitable for structures made of high-performance concretes or for the application of these new materials for flexible, traffic-adapted structures of the transport infrastructure. CINSAT is also directly involved in the nanotechnology research projects.