Constructing living buildings: a review of relevant technologies for a novel application of biohybrid robotics

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  • Mary Katherine Heinrich
  • Sebastian von Mammen
  • Daniel Nicolas Hofstadler
  • Mostafa Wahby
  • Payam Zahadat
  • Tomasz Skrzypczak
  • Mohammad Divband Soorati
  • Rafal Krela
  • Wojciech Kwiatkowski
  • Thomas Schmickl
  • Phil Ayres
  • Kasper Støy
  • Heiko Hamann

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Biohybrid robotics takes an engineering approach to the expansion and exploitation of biological behaviours for application to automated tasks. Here, we identify the construction of living buildings and infrastructure as a high-potential application domain for biohybrid robotics, and review technological advances relevant to its future development. Construction, civil infrastructure maintenance and building occupancy in the last decades have comprised a major portion of economic production, energy consumption and carbon emissions. Integrating biological organisms into automated construction tasks and permanent building components therefore has high potential for impact. Live materials can provide several advantages over standard synthetic construction materials, including self-repair of damage, increase rather than degradation of structural performance over time, resilience to corrosive environments, support
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of the Royal Society. Interface
Issue number156
Publication statusPublished - 26 Jul 2019


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