According to analysts, a research team at Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) led by Dr. Kamal Khayat has been granted $1.4 million by the US Army Corps of Engineers to develop an artificial intelligence (AI) program for 3D printing concrete. This technology aims to revolutionize the construction process by allowing the Army Corps to quickly print concrete structures without relying on large quantities of traditional construction materials.
The use of AI in material selection will streamline the process, ensuring optimal performance and profitability. The AI program will evaluate a wide range of locally available materials in different areas and identify the most suitable combinations for 3D printing concrete. This advancement is expected to improve construction efficiency, enhance troop security, promote sustainable practices, and expedite humanitarian assistance missions.
Dr. Kamal Khayat, who serves as S&T’s Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation as well as Vernon and Maralee Jones Professor of Civil Engineering, is leading an interdisciplinary team comprising researchers with backgrounds in materials science and engineering, civil engineering, and computer science. Their goal is to replace at least 50% of traditional cement materials with indigenous or local materials.
To achieve this objective, various potential materials will be tested including naturally occurring minerals, industrial by-products, and agricultural waste such as rice hull ash, palm oil fuel ash, ground dolomite, and ground glass. The utilization of these alternative materials not only contributes to local sustainability but also provides economic benefits for the respective regions.
In tandem to material testing, the research team will explore different types of fibers for reinforcing 3D-printed structures. Metallic and synthetic structural fibers will be considered along with unconventional fibers derived from plants and recycled materials like bamboo, coconut, glass hemp cellulose, and rubber fibers.
By reducing problems in the material supply chain and lowering construction costs through innovative material selection techniques enabled by AI technology, this project is expected to significantly improve the mobility of troops. Missouri S&T, known for its expertise in novel 3D printing of concrete materials, is proud to contribute to this important work.
Dr. Kamal Khayat has been a pioneer in the field of high-performance concrete with tailored concrete rheology for many years. His contributions have earned him multiple awards, including the Robert E. Philleo Award from the Concrete Research Council of the American Concrete Institute Foundation and a lifetime achievement award from the RILEM International Conference on Rheology and Processing of Materials from Construction.
Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) is a STEM-focused research university located in Rolla, Missouri. With over 7,000 students, it offers 101 degrees in 40 areas of study and is recognized as one of the top 10 universities in the country for return on investment. For more information about Missouri S&T, visit their website at www.mst.edu.
Consequently, Missouri S&T’s research team led by Dr. Kamal Khayat has secured $1.4 million funding from the US Army Corps of Engineers to develop an AI-based program for 3D printing concrete structures using locally available materials. This groundbreaking technology will revolutionize construction processes by enhancing efficiency, sustainability, troop security, and humanitarian assistance missions. By leveraging AI technology and innovative material selection techniques, this project aims to reduce reliance on traditional cement materials while improving local sustainability and economic benefits.