Rich harvest for research

It’s not possible every year for trade shows, congresses, symposia, and other events in the construction materials industry to present groundbreaking innovations. One of the reasons for this is the research cycle. Often many years go by until an idea is developed into a process or a product. The entire development process takes place relatively shielded from the public – for whom this is therefore a seemingly eventless time.

Currently, many private and public clients worldwide see great potential in the development fields of automation and digitalization in planning and production. And now, following a prolonged research and development phase – for the public, seemingly without much to show for it – the harvest has apparently begun. One press release and research report follows the other about processes and products being developed to market maturity. One example here includes additive construction processes, catchily formulated as 3D printing with concrete, which have enabled extrusion of structural components and entire houses in the USA, China, Russia, and Germany.

At this year’s BetonTage in Neu-Ulm, in addition to various additive processes, another process with great potential was presented: non-waste wax formwork. This technology will in future make it possible to manufacture concrete components with complex geometry to industrial scale in innovative precision formwork made of industrial waxes. In any case, production is environmentally friendly and sustainable. After production, the formwork can be melted and the raw material once again made available for production of new formwork.  We present the winners of this year’s Innovation Prize for the Supplier Industry of Concrete Components on pages 16 to 17. You will find all the other submissions for the Innovation Prize beginning on page 18.

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