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Structural Design for Delayed Obsolescence

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Dr Maria Marques de Carvalho.

Structural designers’ efforts to reduce environmental impacts traditionally consist of developing systems that minimise material quantities or use low-impact materials. A third strategy is currently (re)emerging: the reuse of structural components over multiple service lives and in new layouts. Still in its infancy, this circular economy strategy disrupts structural design practice in many ways: rather than manufacturing components after the design of a system, the system is synthesised from a given stock of reclaimed components; versatility, reversibility and transformability become hard requirements for all loadbearing systems and components; costs, performance and environmental assessments span multiple service lifecycles. There is consequently a sudden lack of expertise, design tools, technological solutions and relevant metrics. This talk reviews recent research developments made by the Structural Xploration Lab (EPFL) in the field.

This talk is part of the Engineering Structures Seminar Series series.

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