MIT Developing Concrete That Lasts For 16,000 Years

MIT Developing Concrete That Lasts for 16,000 Years1

Civil engineers at MIT are currently developing a new breed of concrete that will be able to last for 16,000 years. Concrete is one of the most frequently used and widely produced man-made building material on earth, with over 20 billion tons produced per year globally. The use of this new ultra high density concrete will have enormous environmental implications, given its ability to deliver lighter, stronger structures capable of lasting many civilizations, while drastically decreasing the carbon emissions sent into the atmosphere by its inferior predecessor.

One of the inventors of the new material, Franz-Josef Ulm offers, ‘More durable concrete means that less building material and less frequent renovations will be required.’ Ulm, alongside Georgios Constantinides successfully designed this long lasting concrete, with significantly reduced creep, (the time-dependent deformation of structural concrete), by increasing its density and slowing its creep by a rate of 2.6.

‘Finally, we can explain how creep occurs,’ said Professor Franz-Josef Ulm. ‘We can’t prevent creep from happening, but if we slow the rate at which it occurs, this will increase concrete’s durability and prolong the life of the structures. Our research lays the foundation for rethinking concrete engineering from a nanoscopic perspective.’

‘The thinner the structure, the more sensitive it is to creep, so up until now, we have been unable to build large-scale lightweight, durable concrete structures,’ said Ulm. ‘With this new understanding of concrete, we could produce filigree: light, elegant, strong structures that will require far less material.’

With regard to environmental impact, the annual worldwide production of concrete creates between 5 and 10% of all atmospheric CO2. Ulm explains, ‘If concrete were to be produced with the same amount of initial material to be seven times normal strength, we could reduce the environmental impact by 1/7. Maybe we can use nanoengineering to create such a green high-performance concrete.’

The ultra high density concrete could deliver exponential results both in terms of strength and durability, and is undoubtedly poised to redefine architects’ relationship with man’s most reliable building material while literally changing the face of the earth.


19 Responses to “MIT Developing Concrete That Lasts For 16,000 Years”

  1. thegnu says:

    >>Ulm explains, ‘If concrete were to be produced with the same amount of initial material to be seven times normal strength, we could reduce the environmental impact by 1/7.

    Yeah, because the only determinant of environmental impact is the amount of initial material goes into something. Not that we shouldn’t be excited, but it’s misleading.

  2. Andy says:

    I don’t know if this makes sense, but well, at least it could be used for a nuclear waste storage facility that needs to last 10000 years.

  3. Jerrrie says:

    sounds like a great product. what will the next 160 generations do? nothing to do but breath clean air. I think the emissions are a bit over stated.

    • Paku says:

      I simply wnated to thank you very much yet again. I am not sure the things I would’ve used in the absence of the opinions shared by you directly on this field. Completely was a real daunting condition for me, nevertheless seeing a professional strategy you processed it made me to cry with delight. Extremely happier for this support and in addition trust you are aware of a great job you have been accomplishing training many people all through your blog post. Most probably you have never come across any of us.

  4. Caleb says:

    With regard to environmental impact, the annual worldwide production of concrete creates between 5 and 10% of all atmospheric CO2.

    Sorry if I simply can’t believe that. Perhaps with an added “produced by humans” at the end, I could begin to believe it, but that still sounds like a pretty high percentage…and a pretty wide estimate, too. 5% of emissions produced by humans is quite a bit, if you think about it…

  5. Kunal says:

    cool.. but if 16,000 years is the headline and that is a factor 2.6 then concrete today would last 5700 years – already longer than the history of the existence of the material.

    So upgrading existing infrastructure to support this? That would annihilate any environmental benefit that would be gained.

    Doesn’t sound green to me.

  6. riddly says:

    oh great…..appaling buildings and redundant spaces that will last and last….

  7. I have problems seeing your site correctlly via the most recent version of Opera. It is fine in IE6 and Firefox though.

    • Faisal says:

      I just now wanted to thank you one more time for this aaizmng web site you have made here. It can be full of useful tips for those who are definitely interested in that subject, primarily this very post. You’re really all so sweet in addition to thoughtful of others and reading your website posts is a great delight if you ask me. And thats a generous gift! Tom and I are going to have excitement making use of your ideas in what we need to do in a few days. Our record is a mile long which means that your tips will certainly be put to beneficial use.

  8. Hope you have a really great day.

  9. Hope you have a wonderful day.

  10. Mike O'Brien says:

    It’s my impression that most concrete structures that are demolished and replaced have not reached the end of their service life, rather, the end of the economic life. The concrete Kingdome wasn’t demolished because of structural failures, rather it was considered inadequate for sports teams and fans. So I have to ask, what difference would it make if the concrete lasted 16,000 years? Humans will have removed it long before then.

    • Seth says:

      Wrong, the king dome wasn’t demolished because of bad fans or a bad team or else they wouldn’t have built safeco to hold more fans. At the time of demolition they said that the king dome was not structural failing just like you said, it was architecturally failing. Particularly the building’s ability to withstand a large earthquake, which would kill pretty much everyone inside if it happened during a game. Otherwise it would have been made a historical landmark, and almost did despite the demolition request. Get your facts right if you plan on posting your opinion online, the internet is already full of enough bs.

  11. web hosting says:

    Thanks for your write-up on the travel industry. I might also like to add that if you’re a senior taking into account traveling, it is absolutely essential that you buy travel insurance for seniors. When traveling, seniors are at high risk being in need of a medical emergency. Receiving the right insurance cover package on your age group can protect your health and give you peace of mind.

  12. Cecile Weary says:

    I believe this site holds very superb written content material posts .

  13. We are a gaggle of volunteers and starting a brand new scheme in our community. Your website offered us with valuable information to paintings on. You have performed a formidable job and our entire community will be thankful to you.

  14. It’s a goodish you don’t hold a elasticity money secure! I’d definitely communicate money for this unusual webpage! That i assume for the experience i’ll be slaked bookmarking with including an individual’s Provender that module my good Msn wheel. That i pretence assuming that will messages and definitely leave distribute the web place utilizing my advisable Facebook or cheep unit: )

  15. Great goods from you, man. I have understand your stuff previous to and you’re just too excellent. I really like what you have acquired here, certainly like what you are saying and the way in which you say it. You make it entertaining and you still care for to keep it wise. I can’t wait to read much more from you. This is actually a wonderful website.

  16. Very nice info and straight to the point. I don’t know if this is in fact the best place to ask but do you people have any thoughts on where to hire some professional writers? Thanks in advance :)

Leave a Reply