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Eggshell
Thin Folded Concrete Structures
Jammed Architectural Structures
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Smart Dynamic Casting and Prefabrication
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Eggshell, ETH Zurich, 2017-2022
Eggshell is a novel fabrication process for the creation of non-standard, reinforced concrete structures. The process exploits the controlled hydration of concrete as developed in Smart Dynamic Casting. By carefully controlling the early age strength gain of the concrete, 3D-printed recyclable formworks can be used for the casting of full scale, concrete building elements.

Traditionally, concrete casting relies on two separate processes for the fabrication of a concrete element. A formwork is put in place, after which concrete is casted and the element is left for demolding. Eggshell aims to combine these processes by 3D printing a thin-shell formwork whilst simultaneously casting concrete inside. Using this approach, geometrically complex structures can be fabricated efficiently, minimizing formwork waste. The control and synchronization of material properties for both printing and casting are essential to the fabrication process, as the hydrating concrete helps resist buckling behavior of the thin shell formwork during printing.

An advantage of Eggshell is the easy integration of reinforcement, which is often considered to be a challenge for other digital fabrication methods such as concrete extrusion. Furthermore, the extended design space brought by the process grants the possibility of producing structurally efficient shapes such as branching columns which are difficult to fabricate otherwise.
Credits:
Gramazio Kohler Research, ETH Zurich

In cooperation with: Physical Chemistry of Building Materials group (Prof. Dr. Robert J. Flatt)
Collaborators: Joris Burger (project lead), Dr. Ena Lloret-Fritschi, Fabio Scotto, Andi Reusser, Michael Lyrenmann, Philippe Fleischmann

Copyright 2016, Gramazio Kohler Research, ETH Zurich, Switzerland
Gramazio Kohler Research
Chair of Architecture and Digital Fabrication
ETH Zürich HIB E 43
Stefano-Franscini Platz 1 / CH-8093 Zurich

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