Organization profile

Introduction / mission

The chair of Structural Design of Concrete Structures provides education aiming to design safe concrete (and masonry) structures, carries out research and pursues strategic internal and external collaborations. The results are published in high quality scientific journals. The chair addresses structural design from a value chain type of perspective. Design, manufacturing and assembling are considered in an integral manner with a focus on innovation to work on a digital transition. Digital technologies, on all levels, are needed to improve on both construction productivity and sustainability in the sector. It is our vision that design, manufacturing and assembling should be studied in an integrated and digital manner. This explains why the chair also hosts the certificate program on construction technology.

Organisational profile

The research is focussed on digital design, digital manufacturing and digital assembling (D3DMA). Digital design is studied on three subsequent levels. On a macro level, the structures of buildings and (small) civil structures like pedestrian bridges are designed using both parametric and generic design tools. Optimisation algorithms, like form finding and topology optimisation are incorporated to safe on natural resources and explore new shapes, always bearing the construction technology in mind. On a meso level concrete components like slabs and walls are studied numerically. Parametric design tools are being developed, based on strut and tie analysis, yield lines and the stringer panel methods. Finally, on a micro scale, discrete FEM analyses are used to study e.g. the pull-out behaviour of reinforcement and fibres. All types of analyses are supported with fundamental experimental research for matters of verification. Finally, digital manufacturing is treated in the certificate program on construction technology.

Concrete printing
All of the above-mentioned research topics come together in the research on 3D Concrete Printing (3DCP). A unique large-scale print facility has been realised and is allocated in the Structures Laboratory. The research on 3DCP comprises three goals.
The first goal is to work on the robustness of the print process itself. The materials properties of fresh concrete are studied experimentally, and the results are embedded in a finite element analysis to predict the maximum print speed to avoid (plastic) yield strains or overall instability of the printed structures.
The second goal is to improve on the materials properties by additives like fibres and accelerators and innovative types of structural reinforcement. Fibres and other additives are embedded with a special device developed at TU/e near the printer nozzle, just prior to extruding the concrete filaments. This allows for future optimization to functionally graded structures since not only concrete can be places where it is needed most, but also the concrete quality and functionality can be adjusted on demand on every position of the structure in an industrial and controlled manner. Another tool has been developed to automatically embed a reinforcement wire and research is performed to further improve this system. The third level of research is to monitor the print process by (non-destructive) sensors using e.g. ultra sound and optic eyes and work towards printers with algorithms based on deep learning (AI).
The output of recent research is already being applied in real projects, in close collaboration with industrial partners. So far, a cycling bridge has been printed, a second one is in a research phase and the first out of five houses of project Milestone will be ready for the inhabitants in June 2019. More information on 3DCP and the projects can be found on the site:

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.


No photo of Zeeshan Y. Ahmed

Zeeshan Y. Ahmed

Person: Prom. : doctoral candidate (PhD)

Photo of Gabi Bertram

Gabi Bertram

Person: OWP : University Teacher / Researcher

Photo of Freek P. Bos

Freek P. Bos

Person: UD : Assistant Professor


Research Output 1982 2019

An approach to develop printable strain hardening cementitious composites

Chaves Figueiredo, S., Romero Rodríguez, C., Ahmed, Z., Bos, D. H., Xu, Y., Salet, T., Çopuroglu, O., Schlangen, E. & Bos, F., 14 Mar 2019, In : Materials & Design. 2019, 169, 17 p., 107651

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
Strain hardening
Yield stress
Composite materials
1 Citation (Scopus)

Ductility of 3D printed concrete reinforced with short straight steel fibers

Bos, F. P., Bosco, E. & Salet, T. A. M., 2019, In : Virtual and Physical Prototyping. 14, 2, p. 160-174 15 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
Steel fibers
Reinforced Concrete
Reinforced concrete
Open Access
Paraffin waxes
heat storage
Heat storage
phase change materials


3D Concrete Printing

Theo Salet (Manager)

Concrete Structures

Facility/equipment: Research lab

Structural design
Architectural design
Concrete construction


Best Proceedings Paper

Freek Bos (Recipient), 12 Sep 2018

Recognition: OtherCareer, activity or publication related prizes (lifetime, best paper, poster etc.)Scientific


NWO-TTW Open Technology Program

Freek Bos (Recipient), Theo Salet (Recipient), Akke Suiker (Recipient) & Erik Schlangen (Recipient), Apr 2019

Recognition: NWOOtherScientific

Strain hardening
Composite materials

Activities 1998 2019

Materials (Journal)

Freek P. Bos (Peer reviewer)
18 Feb 2019

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesPublication peer-reviewScientific

Architectural Science Review (Journal)

Freek P. Bos (Peer reviewer)
21 Jan 2019

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesPublication peer-reviewScientific

University of Innsbruck

Freek P. Bos (Visiting researcher)
1 Feb 201931 May 2019

Activity: Visiting an external institution typesVisiting an external academic institutionScientific

Press / Media

Photonic Radiation Sensors Survive Huge Doses Undamaged

Zeeshan Ahmed


4 items of media coverage

Press/Media: Expert Comment

United States : Photonic Radiation Sensors Survive Huge Doses Undamaged

Zeeshan Ahmed


1 item of media coverage

Press/Media: Expert Comment

Photon radiation sensors survive huge doses without damage.

Zeeshan Ahmed


1 item of media coverage

Press/Media: Expert Comment

Student theses

3D concrete printing: research and development of a structural reinforcement system for 3D printing with concrete

Author: Jutinov, E., 31 Oct 2017

Supervisor: Salet, T. (Supervisor 1), Bos, F. (Supervisor 2) & Ahmed, Z. (Supervisor 2)

Student thesis: Master


Active adaptive concrete structures

Author: Deetman, A., 31 Oct 2017

Supervisor: Salet, T. (Supervisor 1), Habraken, A. (Supervisor 2) & Wolfs, R. (Supervisor 1)

Student thesis: Master


A new face for justice: transformation of an iconic power plant with 3D concrete printing

Author: Abelen, R., 26 Feb 2019

Supervisor: Bekkering, J. (Supervisor 1), van Hoof, S. (Supervisor 2), Kuit, B. (Supervisor 2) & Ahmed, Z. (Supervisor 2)

Student thesis: Master