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UMAR unit now has its own website: www.nest-umar.net

The Urban Mining and Recycling unit now has its own website. At www.nest-umar.net you can find all information about Empa NEST, the unit UMAR, as well as the making of the unit. Additionally, the website offers a material library of the materials used including data sheets and company contacts.

Neue Zürcher Zeitung reports on UMAR installation

On January 5th, 2018, Swiss Newspaper Neue Züricher Zeitung reports on the successful installation of the NEST Unit Urban Mining and Recycling in Dübendorf. Read the full article here.

MycoTree in Dezeen’s top 10 list of unusual materials

In 2017, a number of designers explored the structural properties of new, environmentally friendly materials – but mushroom mycelium was one of the most unusual. It was used to create a tree-shaped self-supporting structure in South Korea.

The Guardian: Addis has run out of space

As Addis Ababa creaks under the weight of a mushrooming populace, sub-Saharan Africa’s largest housing project is under way. But who benefits? Wrapped in a white shawl and sporting a wide-brimmed cowboy hat, Haile stares out at his cattle as they graze in a rocky patch of grass. “My family and I have been here since I was a child,” he says, nodding at the small, rickety houses to his right. “But we will have to leave soon.” In the distance loom hulking grey towers, casting long shadows over his pasture. This is Koye Feche, a vast construction site on the edge of Addis Ababa that may soon be sub-Saharan Africa’s largest housing project.

The Guardian, by Tom Gardner in Addis Ababa, Interview with Felix Heisel. Photographs by Charlie Rosser.

Construction starts at NEST Unit Urban Mining & Recycling

One working day, two cranes and a well attuned team: on 21 November 2017, the woodworkers from the Austrian company Kaufmann Zimmerei und Tischlerei placed the seven prefabricated modules of the new “Urban Mining & Recycling” unit with utmost precision between the projecting platforms of NEST, the research and innovation building of Empa and Eawag in Dübendorf. The interior finishing will be implemented in the next weeks. The apartment will be ready in the spring of 2018 and will accommodate two tenants.

The NEST unit “Urban Mining & Recycling” is simultaneously an apartment, a material storage, and a material lab. The unit is based on the idea that all resources required to construct a building must be fully reusable, recyclable or compostable. Werner Sobek, director of the Institute for Lightweight Structures and Conceptual Design of the University of Stuttgart and owner of the Werner Sobek Group, together with Dirk E. Hebel and Felix Heisel of the Chair of Sustainable Construction at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), are responsible for the design. The general contractor of the project is Kaufmann Zimmerei und Tischlerei. The seven modules that form the new unit were prefabricated in their factory in the Reuthe, Austria.

The structure as well as large parts of the facade are made of untreated wood. The innovation lies in the connections and the material-oriented use: all connections of the system subjected to tension and compression can be easily undone. Adhesive connections had been omitted in favor of plug and screw connections. The wood being used is applied in such a way that an otherwise standard coating is not necessary, thus making purely type-sorted recycling or purely biological composting possible.

Recycling stones and borrowed floor slabs

The facade consists of aluminum and copper. Both metals can be melted and recycled according to type. Inside, various serially-processed building products had been used, the different materials of which can be recycled in a type-sorted manner and without residue. Among other things, grown wall panels consisting of mushroom-based mycelium, innovative recycling stones, recycled insulation materials, as well as borrowed floor coverings are also being used in the unit. Through the use of such new “material leasing concepts“, the construction of this unit also calls into question the existing economic concepts prevalent in the construction industry. During a second construction phase, the unit will then also address research questions regarding the sustainable use of energy through a retrofittable solar heating system.

The “Urban Mining & Recycling” unit will be connected to the NEST backbone and the interior will be completed in the coming weeks. The official opening of the unit will take place in early February 2018. Shortly thereafter, the first two tenants will move into the new residential unit and subject the materials to a practical test.

Cambodia School Update

The video shows the construction of the first 5 houses of the Cambodia School project within the months of July to October 17. The good progress allows for the first 140 children to start their kindergarden year this November within not only a completely new building, but also a holistic pedagogical concept. Read more here.

MycoTree exhibited at ELMIA Subcontractor fair ‘Material Revolution’

Invited by Haute Innovation and Dr. Sascha Peters, KIT’s Sustainable Construction and ETH Zürich’s Block Research Group are exhibiting their recent MycoTree at the ELMIA Subcontractor fair ‘Material Revolution’ from 11. to 14. November in Jönköping, Sweden. MycoTree is a spatial branching structure made out of load-bearing mycelium components. Its geometry was designed using 3D graphic statics, keeping the weak material in compression only. Its complex nodes were grown in digitally fabricated moulds.

Hans and Roger Strauch Visiting Critic Lecture at Cornell University

On October 30th, Prof. Dirk E. Hebel gave the Hans and Roger Strauch Visiting Critic Lecture at Cornell University. Each semester the Department of Architecture of Cornell University hosts a rich and varied lecture series that serves to extend the pedagogy of classes and design studios. Invited speakers represent a range of professional, teaching, and research interests that engage issues vital to the study and practice of architecture.

Detail RESEARCH: Baustoffe kultivieren – Pilzmyzelium als Werkstoff

On 01. November, Detail RESEARCH featured MycoTree on their website. The article in German describes the aim of the Chair of Sustainable Construction, as well as the Block Research Group to find ways to extend the palette of building materials beyond the conventional choices towards more sustainable and renewable options. The next print edition of Detail will further discuss the exhibition ‘Beyond Mining – Urban Growth’ at the Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism. You can read the full article here.

ARTE/ZDF filmcrew at Chair of Sustainable Construction

The Chair of Sustainable Construction hosted this week a filmcrew of ARTE/ZDF to shoot a XENIUS episode on the research of bamboo materials of the team. It will be shown shortly on public German TV. Our thanks go to Prof. Hans-Joachim Blass, Matthias Frese and Alexander Klein and the rest of the team for using the VAKA hall for the event. Also thanks to Karsten Schlesier of our team organizing the day.

Lecture Series MATERIALS

Starting in the Winter Semester 2017/18, the KIT Faculty of Architecture will offer a lecture series on Materials, organized by the chair of Sustainable Construction, Dirk E. Hebel. In total 13 lectures will address conventional and alternative building materials and their use in construction. Speakers are: Sandra Böhm, Wayne Switzer, Karsten Schlesier, Andreas Mägerlein, Felix Heisel, and Prof. Dirk E. Hebel. Please refer to the poster for actual dates. The lecture is held everyFriday, 09:45am in Lecture Hall Egon-Eiermann at KIT Campus South, Building 20.40.

Poster Design: Uta Bogenrieder

Lecture Series SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION

Starting in the Fall Semester 2017/18, the KIT Faculty of Architecture will offer a lecture series on Sustainable Construction, organized by the chair of Sustainable Construction, Dirk E. Hebel. In total 14 lectures will address the history, state of the art, and alternative futures within the theme. Speakers are: Michael Dax, Daniel Fuhrhop, Monika Goebel, Prof. Petra v. Both, Felix Heisel, Prof. Andreas Wagner, Prof. Matthias Pfeifer, Prof. Thomas Lützkendorf, Jan Wurm, and Prof. Dirk E. Hebel. Please refer to the poster for actual dates. The lecture is held every Wednesday, 09:45 am in Lecture Hall 9 (HS09) at KIT Campus South, Building 20.40.

Poster Design: Uta Bogenrieder

Public lecture by Felix Heisel at Cornell University

On October 13 – 12pm, Felix Heisel holds a public lecture at Milstein Hall as part of his engagement as Hans and Roger Strauch Visiting Critic at Cornell University, USA. The talk – titled “rethinking abundance, resource-adequate building, and the example of UMAR” – follows the conviction that all resources required to construct a building must be fully reusable, recyclable, or compostable. This places life-cycle thinking at the forefront of the design. Instead of merely using and subsequently disposing of resources, they are borrowed from their technical and biological cycles for a certain amount of time before being returned into circulation once again. Such an approach makes reusing and repurposing materials just as important as recycling and upcycling them (both at a systemic and a molecular/biological level). For event details, please click here.

Stuttgarter Zeitung reports on MycoTree

On 6th October, daily newspaper Stuttgarter Zeitung published a report on MycoTree in Seoul, as well as the research work of Sustainable Construction of KIT Karlsruhe and the Block Research Group of ETH Zürich. The complete article (in German) can be found here.

2017 SMART Innovation Execution Grant awarded to Alternative Construction Materials

Alternative Construction Materials of the Future Cities Laboratory (FCL) in Singapore and Sustainable Construction at KIT Karlsruhe have received the 2017 SMART Innovation Centre’s Execution Grant and have been admitted to the Innovation Fellows Program for the project “High-Tensile Organic Fiber Reinforcement for Structural Concrete”. The Fellows Program is aimed to work with Faculty, Post Docs and researchers to prepare them to launch their company. The team was previously awarded the 2012 SMART Innovation Centre’s Innovation Grant for the project “High-Tensile Organic Fiber Reinforcement for Structural Concrete”.

2017 Strategic Pilot Grant of University of Newcastle awarded to Alternative Construction Materials

Alternative Construction Materials of the Future Cities Laboratory (FCL) in Singapore and Sustainable Construction at KIT Karlsruhe, together with University of Newcastle’ Singapore branch (UoN) have received the 2017 Strategic Pilot Grant from University of Newcastle Australia for the project “Structural Behaviour and Applications of Newly Developed Bamboo Composite”. The aim of this scheme offered by UoN is to provide support for researchers to pursue high impact, strategic and collaborative research activities, specifically for young investigators.

The joint research aims to optimize the FCL’s bamboo composite materials for structural applications in the field of timber construction. Several physical and mechanical properties tests are designed to evaluate the bamboo composite material for applications such as beams, floor slabs and joints. The project will run from October 2017 to March 2018 with a potential to be extended further.

World-Architects reports on MycoTree

Read the full article here.

MycoTree in Badische Neueste Nachrichten


On September 19th, also Karlsruhe’s newspaper ‘Badische Neueste Nachrichten’ reports on the MycoTree in Korea.

Prefabrication of UMAR ‘Urban Mining and Recycling’ has started

On September 4th, the prefabrication of all 7 modules of NEST unit UMAR has started at the facilities of general contractor kaufmann zimmerei und tischlerei gmbh in Reuthe, Austria. The building, designed by Werner Sobek with Dirk E. Hebel and Felix Heisel in collaboration with a multitude of academic and industrial partners, aims to prove the feasibility of the circular approach for the building industry. For more information, please click here.

Public Lecture by Felix Heisel at Cornell University APP

On September 11, Felix Heisel is holding a public lecture at Cornell University APP titled Building from Waste – the Waste Vault as part of his engagement as Hans and Roger Strauch Visiting Critic the coming semester in New York. He is co-teaching the design study Cyclo: Architectures of Waste with Caroline O’Donnell and Dillon Pranger, which looks at “non-cyclables as potential materials for new form generation. Cyclo will first map currently obscure recycling networks in the United States and globally, documenting where our various recycling-bound materials go to be processed, and searching for materials that are not recycled (whether due to material qualities or due to economic feasibility). Part two will focus on these non-cyclables as physical objects and investigate methods of using these materials legibly, in order to promote environmental awareness and architectural innovation.
For more information please click here.

Dezeen reports on the opening of MycoTree at Seoul Biennale

“While some architects have been experimenting with mushroom mycelium as a cladding material, architect Dirk Hebel and engineer Philippe Block have gone one step further – by using fungi to build self-supporting structures.

Hebel, who leads the Sustainable Construction unit at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, and Block, who founded the Block Research Group at ETH Zürich, have created a tree-shaped structure consisting almost entirely of mycelium.

According to the duo, the material – which is formed from the root network of mushrooms – could provide the structure of a two-storey building, if it is designed with the right geometries.”

Read the complete article here.

Watch the Making-Off Video of MycoTree at the Seoul Biennale

Beyond Mining – Urban Growth to open at Seoul Biennale

Opening on 2nd September 2017, the Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism is entitles Imminent Commons:

In an age of environmental decay and unprecedented wealth inequality, the cities of the world gather in Seoul to explore the urban parliaments where the politics of resources and technologies is enacted. The Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2017 is an experimental platform for an imminent urbanism that goes beyond human-centered function, ownership, and consumption to a commons of resources, technologies, and production.

The cities of the world stand at a crossroads. Amidst radical social, economic, and technological transformations, will the city become a driving force of creativity and sustainability or will it be a mechanism of inequality and environmental decay? Cities are not only the drivers of social change but are now modifying ecosystems, geological structures, and even the climate. For the first time in history, the crucial questions of the city — climate change, biodiversity, air pollution, food security, automation, unemployment and inequality— are driven by concerns beyond human control and threaten the very survival of the planet.

The inaugural Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism proposes nine essential commons as a viable path towards a sustainable and just urbanism. Emerging from both ecological and technological concerns, this framework foregrounds an exploration not of distant utopias but of the very near future. In other words, these emerging commons are already changing the way we live in cities. Whether met with fear or hope, they will very soon change the way we live in the city. The Seoul Biennale provides a platform for an international array of participants – politicians, policy makers, experts, and citizens at large – presenting global research and engaging with local conditions.

Four Ecology Commons: Air, Water, Fire, Earth
Five Technology Commons: Making, Moving, Communicating, Sensing, Recycling

The exhibition Beyond Mining – Urban Growth by the Professorships Dirk E. Hebel and Philippe Block is part of the Common Earth and will be on display in Pavilion i7 at the Donuimun Museum Village from 2nd September to 5th November 2017.

More information can be found here: http://seoulbiennale.org

Süddeutsche Zeitung – The world is running out of sand

On 18 July 2017, Süddeutsche Zeitung reports on the resource sand for the building industry, with an interview by Prof. Dirk E. Hebel. “Dirk Hebel von der Universität Karlsruhe zweifelt trotzdem an der Nachhaltigkeit von Wüstensand und seinem Nutzen als alternativem Baustoff. ‘Die Idee klingt erst einmal gut’, sagt er, ‘aber auch Wüstensand ist erschöpflich. Die Wüste hat genauso ein Ökosystem wie Meere oder Flüsse, das dann zerstört wird. So würden wir ein Problem mit einem nächsten ersetzen.'” The full text (in German) can be found here.

Material exhibition at KIT faculty of architecture open day

The Professorship of Sustainable Construction, as part of the yearly open day of the faculty of architecture at KIT Karlsruhe, is displaying material samples of its current research projects at the material library, Room 141.1. The event takes place on July 19th 2017 in the main building 20.40, from 4pm onwards. For details on the faculty’s program, please click here.

Urban Mining & Recycling at conference “Kreislaufgerechtes Bauen”

On 07.07.2017, Felix Heisel held a public lecture at the conference “Kreislaufgerechtes Bauen” in Aachen, speaking about the NEST Module UMAR (Urban Mining and Recycling), which is currently under construction in Switzerland. The German magazine Recycling reported on the event with the words: “Felix Heisel vom Fachgebiet Nachhaltiges Bauen des Karlsruher Institut für Technologie forderte Architekten zum Umdenken in der Planung auf. Ein mit dem Architekturbüro Werner Sobek in der Schweiz geplantes Gebäude sei im Bau und zeige neue Möglichkeiten: Alle Bauteile sind hier dekonstruierbar und sortenrein trennbar, um eine Wiederverwendung von Materialien sicher zu stellen. Nur so können Gebäude in der Zukunft als Materiallager dienen.”

Read the complete text (in German) here.

Update Village School House Project Cambodia with Smiling Gecko

In December 2016, the planning of the architecture by the team under the direction of Prof. Dirk E. Hebel was completed with a ready-to-go, realizable project. The adaptation to the local regulations and the approval of the project were also finalized in spring 2017. In April 2017, the earthworks started. First of all, the whole school area had to be raised. The construction site is huge and we will be moving 600’000 m3 of soil. The result is a lake of 110,000m3 which will be used for the irrigation of our agricultural projects in the future. Although the rainy season, which had started too early, leads to delays, we are sure to be able to take up the school operation with the kindergarten and the first school year in November17. More information here.

Konferenz Kreislaufgerechtes Bauen

Magdalena Zabek, wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiterin des Fachgebiets Nachhaltiges Bauen, veranstaltet in Kooperation mit der Innovationsregion Rheinisches Revier GmbH und der Juniorprofessur Rezykliergerechtes Bauen / RWTH Aachen eine Konferenz zum Thema „Kreislaufgerechtes Bauen“ am 07.07.2017 in Aachen. Es werden Vorträge zu Bewertungsmöglichkeiten von kreislaufgerechten und ressourcenschonenden Bauten stattfinden. Felix Heisel wird seine Erfahrungen mit der Kreislaufwirtschaft in Bauwesen vorstellen. Neben den Vorträgen findet eine Ausstellung zu kreislaufgerechten und umweltschonenden Bauprodukten statt.

Veranstaltungsort:
Ehemaliges Straßenbahndepot
Talstraße 2
52068 Aachen

Nähere Informationen zur Veranstaltung entnehmen Sie bitte dem Programmheft:
http://rheinisches-revier.de/fileadmin/user_upload/pdf/allgemein/170510_Programm_IRR.pdf

Anmeldungen zur Veranstaltung bitte unter folgenden Link:
https://goo.gl/forms/05lm48bWQvolaDzT2

Anmeldeschluss ist der 16.06.2017

Antrittsvorlesung Professor Dirk E. Hebel


Alternativen Konstruieren
Mittwoch 07.06.2017, 19:00 bis 21:00

KIT Karlsruhe / Campus Süd / Englerstrasse 7
Geb. 20.40 / Egon-Eiermann-Hörsaal
76131 Karlsruhe

Chair of Sustainable Construction exhibits at Cologne Design Fair interzum 2017

The Chair of Sustainable Construction of KIT Karlsruhe exhibits outcomes of its newest material research at the Cologne Design Fair 2017 together with Haute Innovation und their contribution Circular Thinking – from Upcycling to Biofabrication.

“Alternative raw materials are increasingly being identified across different manufacturing industries and production systems being optimised with a view to reusing recyclable materials. Ideally, at the end of the product lifecycle, there should be no waste produced, but instead high-quality materials that can be used as a starting point for a new product lifecycle. Recycling becomes upcycling, so waste is not produced at all and resources remain in the cycle. The shift away from “consumption” of a resource to its “use” is of especially high importance to material-intensive industries. New upcycling processes will greatly reduce the use of resources and energy on all levels.

In the congress on “Upcycling and sustainable materials cycles”, these topics will be discussed by Dr Sascha Peters and other experts from the sector, using practical examples for illustration.”

Urban Mining & Recycling (UMAR) Unit in Dübendorf

The Urban Mining & Recycling (UMAR) Experimental Unit is the newest unit of the NEST research building on the campus of the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa) in Dübendorf, Switzerland. The building design created by Werner Sobek with Dirk E. Hebel and Felix Heisel demonstrates how a responsible approach to dealing with our natural resources can go hand in hand with appealing architectural form. The project is underpinned by the proposition that all the resources required to construct a building must be fully reusable, recyclable or compostable. This places life-cycle thinking at the forefront of the design: Instead of merely using and subsequently disposing of resources, they are borrowed from their technical and biological cycles for a certain amount of time before being put back into circulation once again. Such an approach makes reusing and repurposing materials just as important as recycling and upcycling them (both at a systemic and a molecular/biological level, e.g. via melting or composting). This conceptual emphasis means that UMAR functions simultaneously as a materials laboratory and a temporary material storage.

The following approaches lie at the heart of the design:

  • Temporary removal and borrowing instead of permanent acquisition and disposal
  • Maximal modularisation and prefabrication
  • The potential for all materials and products to be extracted cleanly, separated out and sorted

The building, which is created on the basis of a modular construction concept, is fully prefabricated and tested in the factory. The supporting structure and large parts of the façade consist of untreated wood, a material that can be reused or composted after the building is dismantled. The façade also includes aluminium and copper, two types of metal that can be separated out cleanly, melted down and recycled. The interior of the unit contains an extremely diverse range of serially manufactured building products whose various constituent materials can be separated out and sorted before being introduced back into their respective materials cycles without leaving behind any residue or waste. Among the technologies used here are cultivated mycelium boards, innovative recycled bricks, repurposed insulation materials, leased floor coverings and a multifunctional solar thermal installation.

Visitors can learn about all of the materials and products used in the project at the entrance to the unit and in the dedicated materials library.

The UMAR unit is not just a material storage, but also a public repository of information that is intended to serve as a model example and a source of inspiration for other building projects. UMAR wants to make a contribution to the paradigm shift that is required in the construction industry. The module functions both as a laboratory and a test run for sustainable building projects and the processes associated with them. In collaboration with partners from the worlds of planning, administration and production, the unit’s goal is to examine resource consumption and the key issues in the construction industry and use its insights to develop a range of innovative tools and approaches.

Opening: February 2018

Project Team:

Concept, Design and Project Planning:
Werner Sobek with Dirk E. Hebel and Felix Heisel, Stuttgart and Karlsruhe, Germany (Project Management, Werner Sobek Office: Bernd Köhler, Frank Heinlein)
Structural Planning and General Contractor:
kaufmann zimmerei und tischlerei gmbh, Reuthe, Austria (Matthias Kaufmann)
HLSKE (Heating, Ventilation, Sanitation, Air-Conditioning & Electrical Systems) and MSR (Measuring & Control Technology):

Amstein-Walthert AG, Zürich, Switzerland (Project Management: Simon Büttgenbach)
Sprinklers:
NBG Ingenieure AG, Bern, Switzerland (Bernhard Zmoos)
JOMOS Feuerschutz AG, Balsthal, Switzerland (Rudolf Jenni)
Fire Safety:
Balzer Ingenieure AG, Chur, Switzerland (Dumeng Wehrli, Christoph Schärer)
Building Physics:
Weber Energie und Bauphysik, Schaffhausen, Switzerland (Moritz Eggen)
Client:
Empa Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, Dübendorf, Switzerland (Enrico F. Marchesi, Reto Fischer)

Key-Note “Building from Waste” – Circular Thinking Konferenz INTERZUM Cologne

Prof. Dirk E. Hebel hält am 18.05.2017 auf der Designmesse INTERZUM in Köln die Key-Note “Building from Waste”. Außerdem stellt das Fachgebiet neuartige Baumaterialien aus seiner Forschungsarbeit aus.

Mit Blick auf die steigende Weltbevölkerung und eine auf den Ressourcenverbauch ausgelegte Industriekultur des 20. Jahrhunderts wird in der Circular Economy ein Idealbild für ein Wirtschaften mit den vorhandenen Werkstoffen gesehen. Der Strategieansatz verfolgt das Ziel, Stoffströme zu schließen, Materialien nach Möglichkeit in geschlossenen Kreisläufen zirkulieren zu lassen und den Wert von Produkten so lange zu erhalten, wie es wirtschaftlich sinnvoll ist und qualitativ möglich erscheint.

Die INTERZUM-Konferenz “Circular Thinking” wird am 18. Mai 2017 neben der Sonderausstellung zu gleichnamigem Thema die Potenziale des Denkens in geschlossenen Materialkreisläufen für Innovationsmanager, Designer und Architekten aufbereiten und Lösungsansätze vorstellen. Ausgewiesene Spezialisten diskutieren im Kontext von vier thematischen Schwerpunkten die Innovationspotenziale anhand herausragender Entwicklungen der letzten Jahre.

Ort: Interzum “Innovation of Interior”, KölnMesse, Halle 4.2
Veranstalter: INTERZUM 2017
Programmentwicklung und Moderation: Dr. Sascha Peters (Haute Innovation)

Beyond Mining – Urban Growth
at Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2017

As populations and aspirations grow, so does the demand for materials and resources to support them. Although such resource demands were once satisfied by local and regional hinterlands, they are becoming increasingly global in scale and reach. This phenomenon has generated material flows that are trans-continental and planetary in scope, and has profound consequences for the sustainability, functioning, sense of ownership and identity of future cities. However, the global concentration of the construction industry on a selected few mined materials puts high pressure on our natural resources. If we talk about the future city, it becomes clear that it cannot be built with the same finite resources.

The 21st century will face a radical paradigm shift in how we produce materials for the construction of our habitat. The linear concept of “produce, use, and discard” has proven itself unsustainable in the face of scarce resources and exponentially increasing urban populations. Instead, to achieve a cycle of production, use, and re-use, we must explore alternative materials and approaches to construction. The Professorship of Sustainable Construction Dirk E. Hebel at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and the Block Research Group (BRG) at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zürich are combining their knowledge in materials, construction, structures, and geometry to address the problems posed by inefficiency in the realms of current design and material use.

Utilizing the regenerative materials mycelium and bamboo and a design based on polyhedral form and force diagrams controlling the geometry of the structure’s forces, this exhibition presents a full-scale vision for how we may move beyond the mining of our construction materials to their cultivation and urban growth. It suggests ways that efficiency of digital design and engineering and alternative resources can join forces to question current practice and propose more sustainable approaches.

Mycelium is the root network of mushrooms, a fast growing matrix that can act as a natural and self-assembling glue. Digesting plant-based waste products, such as saw dust, mycelium’s dense network of hyphae binds the substrate into a structurally active material composite. The advantages of such products are significant: As mycelium follows a metabolic cycle, building elements or whole constructions may be composted after their original use. The material may be grown locally, reducing both the energy and time required with transportation. And, as they are organic matter, they act to reverse carbon emissions through the absorption of carbon.

Mycelium based materials offer significant ecologic advantages on one hand but offer a comparably low structural strength on the other. When building with such weak materials, good geometry is essential for maintaining equilibrium through compression only. Such so-called funicular geometries have the advantage that their internal stresses are very low. While current conventional development of engineered materials, such as e.g. concrete and steel, is largely focused on making materials stronger by increasing their allowable stress, achieving stability through geometry instead allows the use of weak materials, such as mushroom mycelium, in structural applications.

We believe that local, regenerative and cultivated resources in combination with informed structural design, have the potential to become a very real alternative to established materials within the building industry.

Opening: 02. September 2017
Location: Donuimun Museum Village, Seoul, South Korea

Project Team:
Sustainable Construction, Dirk E. Hebel / KIT Karlsruhe & FCL Singapore
Professorship Philippe Block, Block Research Group / ETH Zürich
Karlsruhe: Karsten Schlesier, Felix Heisel
Zürich: Matthias Rippmann, Tomás Méndez Echenagucia, Juney Lee, Alessandro Dell’Endice, Andrew Liew, Noelle Paulson, Tom Van Mele
Singapore: Nazanin Saeidi, Alireza Javadian, Adi Reza Nugroho, Robbi Zidna Ilman, Erlambang Adjidarma, Hokie Christian, Orion Tan Sheng Yu, Kelly Cooper

Production partner:
Mycotech, PT Miko Bahtera Nusantara Indonesia

With kind support of:
Department of Architecture, ETH Zürich, Switzerland
ETH Global, ETH Zürich, Switzerland
Future Cities Laboratory (FCL) Singapore-ETH Centre, Singapore
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany

 

Bamboo Composite Reinforcement at SuperMaterial in London

SuperMaterial is a major public exhibition by The Built Environment Trust celebrating the essential, and often hidden, elements of our surroundings. Delving into the world of academia and science, we identify the latest laboratory-based discoveries and demonstrate how they will change our world – informing the R&D departments of today and transforming the buildings of our future. The project will also explore how the historical application of raw elements and minimally processed goods – the ‘super materials’ of their time – have shaped our urban fabric.

The show exhibits bamboo composite reinforcement produced by the Assistant Professorship Dirk E. Hebel at the Future Cities Laboratory in Singapore, the ETH Zürich in Switzerland. The display is on show at the Building Centre in London from February through April 2017.

View the SuperMaterial online exhibition here.

DVL Lehmbaupreis for Philipp Müller

bildschirmfoto-2016-12-12-um-09-52-13

For the first time Young Academics were awarded with the DVL Lehmbaupreis at Lehm 2016 – International Conference on Building with Earth in Weimar.

The prize aims to promote the study of earth building in academic context. It recognises academic work of excellent quality that demonstrates a firm knowledge of earth building and makes a forward-looking and original contribution in the fields of design, construction, research or development.

Philipp Müller was awarded with the second prize for his Master Thesis dealing with reliability analysis of earth block masonry structures as it can be seen as a major contribution to the efforts in regard of the ongoing standardization process in earth building. For more information, please click here.

Lecture by Mikkel Bøgh from EFFEKT

effekt-for-web

Mikkel Bøgh from Danish architecture team EFFEKT gave a presentation this week as a part of the HS16 Living Lab Zakynthos Lecture Series. In his talk Mikkel covered projects ranging from research and experimental design up to implemented realizations. One of the most recent work, called ReGen Villages, aims to construct a self sustaining community comprised of active houses adressing energy production, water management, and waste-to-resource systems.

EFFEKT received numerous awards and won several Danish and international competitions in the fields of architecture, planning, urban space and landscape projects.

Lecture by Christoph Lüthi from Eawag

eawag

In the third week of the HS16 Living Lab Zakynthos the Chair of Architecture and Construction hosted Dr. Christoph Lüthi from Aquatic Research Eawag. Christoph gave a thorough input on the newest sustainable solutions in the realm of Sanitation, Water and Waste Management for the developed and developing areas.

Annual Exhibition ETH D-Arch

jahresausstelung

Every year in September, shortly after the beginning of a new semester, an Annual Exhibition takes place in the main hall of HIL Building at ETH Hönggerberg. The recent one presents the students’ work of the Fall 2015 and Spring 2016 semesters at the Department of Architecture. In addition to the students’ work, the three latest publications of the Chair of Architecture and Construction are featured, which include ‘SUDU Research and Manual’ by Dirk E. Hebel, ‘Cities of Change: Addis Ababa’ by Marc Angélil and Dirk E. Hebel, as well as ‘Lessons of Informality’ by Felix Heisel and Bisrat Kifle.

The exhibition will run until the end of October.

2016 JEC Asia Innovation Award for the research team of the Professorship of Architecture and Construction Dirk E. Hebel on Alternative Construction Materials and Republic Polytechnic Singapore

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The research team of the Professorship of Architecture and Construction Dirk E. Hebel on Alternative Construction Materials at the Future Cities Laboratory in Singapore together with Republic Polytechnic won the 2016 JEC Asia Innovation Award for their project “Maximizing Bonding Between Sustainable Bamboo Composite and Concrete”. The project is based on a grant by the Ministry of Education under the Translational R&D and Innovation Fund that the FCL team and Republic Polytechnic won together in March 2015.

The ETH/FCL team started to collaborate with Republic Polytechnic in 2014. As part of the grant the ETH/FCL team will train more than 25 Republic Polytechnic students during their Final Year Projects. Successful students then continue their Industry Immersion Program (IIP) internship with us. To date nine Republic Polytechnic students completed the five months IIP.

The winning project will be featured in the JEC Composites Magazine. JEC hosts the world’s biggest and most famous composite fair and exhibition in Paris every year. The JEC Composites Magazine is read by 550,000 composite industry professionals around the world.

First Annual FCL Conferenece in Singapore: FUTURE CITIES / CHALLENGES

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Prof. Dirk E. Hebel and Aurel von Richthofen presented at the first annual FCL conference entitled Future Cities / Challenges in Singapore. Prof. Dirk E. Hebel reported on latest developments in research and first steps of implementation projects and gave an outlook on future vectors of engagement while Aurel von Richthofen presented the Engeneering for Development Summer School held with ETH Global and TU Delft in the Netherlands in July 2016 on the topic of “Sand – an (in)finite resource?”.

More information about the conference can be found here.

       
 
 
 
Karlsruher Institut für Technologie
Fakultät für Architektur
Institut Entwerfen und Bautechnik

Fachgebiet Nachhaltiges Bauen
Englerstr. 11, Geb. 11.40, Raum 25
D-76131 Karlsruhe
 
 
 
Recent Publications:  
 

    UMAR – Urban Mining and Recycling Unit, Dübendorf, Schweiz

    March 6, 2019

    Claus Käpplinger (2019) UMAR – Urban Mining and Recycling Unit, Dübendorf, Schweiz. In architektur.aktuell the art of building, Energy Design 01-02 2019 , 82-93. Wien, Austria: architektur.aktuell GmbH.

     
     

    Prototypological Research: Pioneering Construction Materials

    February 28, 2019

    Heisel, Felix, and Dirk E. Hebel (2019) Prototypological Research: Pioneering Construction Materials. In Future Cities Laboratory: Indicia 02, edited by Stephen Cairns and Devisari Tunas, 200–207. Singapore, Singapore: Lars Müller Publishers.

     
     

    Alternative Construction Materials

    February 1, 2019

     
     

    DGNB Report Circular Economy

    January 8, 2019

    Durán, Christine Ruiz, Dr. Christine Lemaitre, Dr. Anna Braune (DGNB e.V.) (2019). DGNB Report Januar 2019, Circular Economy – Kreisläufe schließen, heißt zukunftsfähig sein
     
     

    Die Welt

    January 7, 2019

    Alexandra Trudslev (2018). Versandet, Die Welt, 29.12.2018, Wissen, S.21.

     
     

    Urbane Mine

    January 7, 2019

    Martina Metzner (2018). Urbane MIne: Die Forschungs-Einheit UMAR im Zukunftsgebäude NEST in der Schweiz setzt auf Müll als Baustoff und soll nach fünf Jahren rückgebaut werden können. Materialreport 2019, 12/2018, S.56-57

     
     

    Hochparterre

    November 26, 2018

    Palle Petersen (2018). Die Stadt in 30 Jahren – wer baut sie und woraus, Gespräch mit Dirk Hebel, Hochparterre, Zeitschrift für Architektur, Planung und Design, Ausgabe 11/2018, 51.

     
     

    Urban Mining and Recycling

    November 22, 2018

    XIA Forum (2018). Urban Mining and Recycling, XIA Intelligente Architektur, Zeitschrift für Architektur und Technik, Ausgabe 04-06/2018, 14-15.

     
     

    Tragendes Pilzgewerbe

    October 7, 2018

    Peter Streiff (2018). Tragendes Pilzgewebe, Wohnung und Gesundheit, Zeitschrift für Baubiologie, Ausgabe 10/2018, 52-53.

     
     

    Bauen Reloaded

    July 18, 2018

    Witte, Jutta (2018). Bauen reloaded – Wohnlabor zeigt Ressourcenkreislauf in der Architektur, looKIT, Magazin für Forschung, Lehre, Innovation, Ausgabe 02/2018, 66-68.

     
     

    Ohne verbindliche Recyclingquote geht es nicht

    July 16, 2018

    Geipel, Kaye (2018). Ohne verbindliche Recyclingquote geht es nicht, Bauwelt 14.2018(Recycelt): 24–31.

     
     

    Versuchsarchitektur

    June 11, 2018


    Pestalozzi, Manuel (2018). Versuchsarchitektur, DAB Deutsches Architektenblatt, 106/18, 16-20.

     
     

    Green Steel

    June 11, 2018


    Hebel, Dirk E., Felix Heisel and Alireza Javadian (2017). Green Steel, in Constellation.s: Inhabiting the World, arc en reve d’architecture, Michel Lussault, Francine Fort, Michel Jacques, Fabienne Brugere, and Guillaume le Blanc, 162–167. Bordeaux, France: ACTES SUD.

     
     

    Im Abfall wohnen

    June 11, 2018


    Schönwetter, Christian (2018). Im Afbfall Wohnen: Versuchsgebäude aus recycelten Materialien in Dübendorf, md INTERIOR DESIGN ARCHITECTURE, Zeitschrift, 06/18, 72-74.

     
     

    Addis Ababa Potato Plan

    June 10, 2018


    Heisel, Felix and Raphael Disler (2018). Addis Ababa, in The Potato Plan Collection: 40 Cities through the Lens of Patrick Abercrombie, 22–25. London, UK: nai010 publishers.

     
     

    Excerpts from Lessons of Informality

    April 17, 2018


    Wubshet, Berhanu and Felix Heisel (2018). Landownership and the Leasehold System in Ethiopia: The Formal-Informal Dialogue  in Landholding and Urban Development, COLLAGE – Zeitschrift für Planung, Umwelt und Städtebau 02/18: 21–25.

    The April edition of Swiss magazine COLLAGE is featuring excerpts of Lessons of Informality: Architecture and Urban Planning for Emerging Territories – Concepts from Ethiopia (Felix Heisel and Bisrat Kifle, Birkhäuser, 2016).

     
     

    Urban Mining and Recycling in TEC21

    January 8, 2018

    Knüsel, Paul (2017). Ein Meister darf Normen brechen, TEC21 51-52(Gebäudetechnik-Kongress: Können Planer alles?): 20–25.

     
     

    Reservoir Building: Towards an Idea of Abundant Pertinence

    September 20, 2017


    Hebel, Dirk E. (2017). Reservoir Building: Towards an Idea of Abundant Pertinence, in Embodied Energy and Design: Making Architecture Between Metrics and Narratives, ed. David Benjamin, 107–116. New York, N.Y, USA and Zürich, Switzerland: Columbia University GSAPP, Lars Müller Publishers.

     
     

    Beyond Mining – Urban Growth: The Architectural Innovation of Cultivated Resources through Appropriate Engineering

    September 10, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E., Philippe Block, Felix Heisel and Tomas Mendez Echenagucia (2017). Beyond Mining – Urban Growth: The Architectural Innovation of Cultivated Resources through Appropriate Engineering, in IMMINENT COMMONS: THE EXPANDED CITY, 116–127. Seoul, South Korea: Actar Publishers, Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2017.

     
     

    Alternative Baumaterialien

    August 9, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E., Felix Heisel and Aurel von Richthofen (2017). Alternative Baumaterialien, in BodenSchätzeWerte: Unser Umgang mit Rohstoffen, focusTerra, ed. focusTerra, 214–217. Zürich, Switzerland: vdf Hochschulverlag.

     
     

    Building from Waste – the Waste Vault

    August 8, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E., Marta H. Wisniewska and Felix Heisel (2017). Building from Waste – the Waste Vault, in IMMINENT COMMONS: Urban Questions for the Near Future, eds. Alejandro Zaera-Polo, Hyungmin Pai, and urbanNext. Seoul, South Korea: Actar Publishers, Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2017.

     
     

    Shifting Paradigms: From Excavation to Cultivation

    August 8, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E., Nikita Aigner, Dustin Fleck, Felix Heisel, Alireza Javadian, Simon Lee, Philipp Müller, Aurel von Richthofen, Karsten Schlesier and Marta H. Wisniewska (2017). Shifting Paradigms: From Excavation to Cultivation, in Future Cities Laboratory: Indicia 01, 191–199. Singapore-ETH Centre, Signapore: Lars Müller Publishers.

     
     

    Circular Economy Pedagogical Methods

    June 13, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E., Patrick Chladek, Amelie Fibicher, Felix Heisel, Philippe Jorisch, Hans-Christian Rufer and Marta H. Wisniewska (2017). Circular Economy Pedagogical Methods, by Professor Dirk Hebel,: in The Re-Use Atlas: A Designer’s Guide towards a Circular Economy, ed. Duncan Baker-Brown, 110–113. London, UK: RIBA Publishing.

     
     

    Cultivated Building Materials: Industrialized Natural Resources for Architecture and Construction

    June 12, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E. and Felix Heisel (2017). Cultivated Building Materials: Industrialized Natural Resources for Architecture and Construction. Birkhäuser: Berlin.

    The 21st century will face a radical paradigm change in how we produce construction materials – a shift towards cultivating, breeding, raising, farming, or growing future resources. The book presents innovative cultivated building materials, like cement grown by bacteria or bamboo fibers as reinforcement for concrete. The book aims to build a bridge from scientific research to product development and application.

     
     

    Die Zukunft ist aus Bambus

    June 11, 2017

    Reimann, Milena (2017). Die Zukunft ist aus Bambus. Rheinische Post: Düsseldorf.

    Aus dem holzähnlichen Gras werden immer mehr Produkte gefertigt – vom Fahrrad übers Kleid bis zum Toilettenpapier. Jetzt wollen Forscher sogar moderne Häuser aus dem Werkstoff bauen. … Auch Dirk Hebel ist begeistert von dem Rohstoff. Er ist Architekturprofessor mit dem Schwerpunkt “Nachhaltiges Bauen” am Karlsruher Institut für Technologie. Statt wie bisher Häuser aus Stein und Stahl zu errichten, wollen er und sein Team Gebäude aus gepressten Bambusfasern bauen. More information here.

     
     

    Wie Sand am Meer?

    June 1, 2017

    Hellge, Anna (2017). Wie Sand Am Meer?, in: natur (07/17): 44 – 49.

    Nicht nur Wüstensand aus Mauretanien macht beim Bauen oder im Küstenschutz Probleme. Dirk Hebel, Professor für nachhaltiges Bauen an der Uni­versität Karlsruhe, erklärt das Phänomen: ,,Zwar ist Sand genau die Zutat, die der Beton benötigt – aber Sand aus der Wüste eignet sich nicht zur herkömmli­chen Betonproduktion.” Stattdessen sind dafür Sän­de aus Meeren, Seen oder Flüssen nötig. Der Grund dafür liegt im Detail: ,,Sie müssen sich diese Sande nur einmal unter der Lupe anschauen”, sagt Hebel. „Sie werden feststellen, dass die Körner, welche durch Bäche und Flüsse in unsere Meere getragen wurden, scharfkantig und gebrochen sind.” Nur die­se kantigen Körnchen können durch hohe Reibungs­widerstände Druckkräfte aufnehmen und weiterlei­ten und machen -salopp gesagt -Beton überhaupt erst belastbar. In der Wüste schmirgeln sich die Sandkörner dagegen glatt und sind zur Betonherstel­lung so nicht brauchbar. ,,Wüstensand verhält sich wie eine Hand voll Murmeln”, erklärt Hebel.

     
     

    ADDIS 5000 – Design Studio Publication

    May 12, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E., Patrick Chladek, Amelie Fibicher, Philippe Jorisch, Felix Heisel, Sophie Nash, Hans Rufer, Gian Salis, Marta H. Wisniewska (2017). ADDIS 5000, Design Studio Publication Fall 2014, 01/05, ETH Zürich, Switzerland.

    Addis 5000 proposes the creation of 5000 new living units in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa in close collaboration with the city administration. Faced with an increasing unavailability of globally-favoured and expensive building materials and construction methods, the city government is in desperate need of alternative housing solutions that embody the country’s long and complex history, the immense cultural identity, and the unique characteristics of a society under transformation.

     
     

    Ressource Schweiz – Design Studio Publication

    May 12, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E., Patrick Chladek, Amelie Fibicher, Philippe Jorisch, Felix Heisel, Sophie Nash, Hans Rufer, Gian Salis, Marta H. Wisniewska (2017). Ressource Schweiz, Design Studio Publication Spring 2015, 02/05, ETH Zürich, Switzerland.

    Ressource Schweiz applies the fundamental principle of exploring local possibilities and opportunities within the territory of Switzerland. Students are partnered with a Swiss craftsperson specializing in a distinct craft utilizing a unique local building material. Intensive visits to the craftsperson and associated region are required to gain an understanding of the material’s application and manufacture as well as to establish a dialogue between the craftsperson, the site, the material and the student.

     
     

    Village School Project Cambodia – Design Studio Publication

    May 12, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E., Patrick Chladek, Amelie Fibicher, Philippe Jorisch, Felix Heisel, Sophie Nash, Hans Rufer, Gian Salis, Marta H. Wisniewska (2017). Village School Project Cambodia, Design Studio Publication Fall 2015, 03/05, ETH Zürich, Switzerland.

    Village School Project Cambodia operates within one of the most crucial fields of sustainable action: the education sector in developing territories. Based on a thorough understanding of an appropriate pedagogical model developed in collaboration with the Pedagogical University of Applied Science in Zürich, students are asked to design an educational facility for 1000 students in a rural area, just north of the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh.

     
     

    Building for Disassembly – Design Studio Publication

    May 12, 2017

    Hebel, Dirk E., Patrick Chladek, Amelie Fibicher, Philippe Jorisch, Felix Heisel, Sophie Nash, Hans Rufer, Gian Salis, Marta H. Wisniewska (2017). Building for Disassembly, Design Studio Publication Spring 2016, 04/05, ETH Zürich, Switzerland.

    Building for Disassembly, aims to produce a paradigm shift within the construction industry. Instead of working within a linear system of “produce-use-discard”, students are asked to develop new construction methods and principles which follow the concept of a circular economy. Designing for disassembly is perceived as a proactive solution to both the shortage of resources and the minimization of waste. Cities can therefore be simultaneously consumers and suppliers of resources and use themselves for their own reproduction.