The future of concrete casting may have been discovered by designers Ron Culver and Joseph Sarafian who have developed a method casting concrete in Lycra stretched by robotic arms. They believe this method could have implications at various scales in the construction sites of the future.
This Fabric Forms project involves pouring a concrete fibreglass mixture into Y-shaped Lycra sleeves stretched into position by six-axis robots. It is seen as the bridging of a gap to create compound curvature, otherwise destroyed when rigid framework is removed:
It is also, according to the designers, a more sustainable alternative that would reduce labour and material costs, as well as being faster than traditional construction methods.
"Traditional casting methods are both labour intensive and unsustainable," Sarafian said. "Plywood formwork is often stripped and discarded after concrete has cured."