Light Transparent Concrete – a Smart-structure

Published: 2021-09-11 19:05:10
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Category: Industry, Infrastructure, Architecture

Type of paper: Essay

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Concrete is a type of material that is the most closely connected to human life and has been widely used in social infrastructure and the construction industry for the past 100 years. In recent years, technology exchange with fields other than engineering has been made to satisfy the various human requirements owing to societal development and changes. Especially in accordance with the desire to create pleasant and beautiful indoor spaces, light transparent concrete has been developed. Light transparent concrete is a material in which a large amount of optical fibers are arranged on concrete in a straight line to give light transmittance through the concrete, and its use has expanded to include that of a new type of interior and exterior material not only for building residents, but also for architects seeking changes through the continuity of discontinuous space by allowing the passage of light in addition to the separation of physical spaces, which is the original function of concrete.
Light transparent concrete was developed by Hungarian architect Aron Losconzi, and it was selected as one of the “36 Best Inventions of the Year” by TIME Magazine. Later, Aron Losconzi founded a company called “LiTraCon”, short for “Light-transmitting Concrete”. Since then, light transparent concrete has been widely used in the United States and Europe as it gives spaces a new type of functionality and improves the user satisfaction despite its high price. As light transparent concrete, however, has limitations as an architectural member using optical fibers in that its production requires labor-intensive work as the tens of thousands of thin fibers should be arranged in a straight line by human hands, and the work related to the fabrication and transport of the test specimens is ineffective due to the heavy weight of concrete, it is produced and sold using the pre-cast method.In today’s world, not only the creative appearance of a structure gets scrutinized but also the monitoring and control of civil infrastructure systems are subjects that have received increasing attention. This is due to the recognition by engineers of the great potential of “smart-structures” concepts to improve the efficiency and reliability of civil structures. The generation of smart structures will be capable of through use of automatic instruments, which rely on sensors that are incorporated in the structures. Indicative of the extent of interest in these related fields are several recent workshops. The proceedings of these workshops include long lists of research topics that require further investigation and development. Among the key research topics that require further study are fiber optic sensors that can be used to quantify various structural parameters.

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