MIT CSHub Presentations at the American Concrete Institute Concrete Convention 2023

Thank you to everyone who attended our presentations at ACI. We had eight presentations covering diverse topics. We are looking forward to the next Concrete Convention in New Orleans! Please find the list of presentations below:

i. Randolph Kirchain, “Incorporating Climate Vulnerability into the Study of the Embodied Carbon of Buildings”

ii. Marcin Hajduczek, “Chemically induced pre-sure carbonation: A novel system for carbon sequestration in cementitious materials”

iii. Ipek Bensu Manav, “Exploring Opportunities for Building Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) to Inform Cement Scope 1-3 Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Reporting” (Poster)

iv. Ariel Attias, “Statistical Physics for Quasi-Brittle Fracture”

v. Elizabeth Moore and Beth Unger, Ph.D, “Transforming the Role of the Concrete Delivery Professional: A Study on Innovative Solutions for the Ready-Mix Concrete Industry”

vi. Haoran Li, Ph.D, “Development of a streamlined framework for probabilistic and comparative life cycle assessment (LCA) of concrete pavements”

vii. Damian Stefaniuk, “Carbon-cement supercapacitors: A disruptive technology for renewable energy storage”

viii. Hessam AzariJafari, “Concrete Material Transparency: How Buy Clean Initiatives are Transforming Project Requirements”

Industry Meets Research at the Fall 2023 CSHub Advisory Meeting!

Thank you to all who attended the November 1st and 2nd Fall Advisory Meeting. We had great discussions and presentations on all things concrete, not to mention an excellent poster session inviting industry to engage directly with the researchers making our work possible. Looking forward to the next Advisory Meeting!

MIT engineers create an energy-storing supercapacitor from ancient materials

Two of humanity’s most ubiquitous historical materials, cement and carbon black (which resembles very fine charcoal), may form the basis for a novel, low-cost energy storage system, according to a new study. The technology could facilitate the use of renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, and tidal power by allowing energy networks to remain stable despite fluctuations in renewable energy supply.

The two materials, the researchers found, can be combined with water to make a supercapacitor — an alternative to batteries — that could provide storage of electrical energy. As an example, the MIT researchers who developed the system say that their supercapacitor could eventually be incorporated into the concrete foundation of a house, where it could store a full day’s worth of energy while adding little (or no) to the cost of the foundation and still providing the needed structural strength. The researchers also envision a concrete roadway that could provide contactless recharging for electric cars as they travel over that road.

Read more in MIT News.

The Hill: EPA must prioritize life-cycle emissions in building materials policy

In order to prevent global temperatures from rising by two degrees Celsius this century, the United Nations estimates that annual global emissions must drop by 30 percent by the decade’s end.

Meeting this urgent goal will be difficult for all sectors, even those which have a clear path to decarbonization. For instance, we know that we must transition the electrical grid to low carbon sources, and we must also transition land-based transportation to electrical sources.

Op-ed by Randolph Kirchain and Hessam AzariJafari.

Read more in The Hill.

MIT CSHub hosts Concrete Delivery Professional workforce conference

On March 29th and 30th, 2023, we welcomed industry and academics to MIT to discuss the state of the professionals that keep the world moving: concrete delivery professionals (CDPs). During the workshop, the assembled experts identified innovative solutions to CDP recruitment and retention as well as the future of the profession.

We deeply appreciate the support of the Concrete Advancement Foundation — without them, this event wouldn’t have been possible.