Wednesday 9 March: 8:00pm - 9:00pm
Mill Lane Lecture Rooms , 8 Mill Lane, CB2 1RW
Looking at the upwardly growing skyline of London, it’s easy to identify the two materials best-loved by civil engineers: steel and concrete. Since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, large amounts of energy have been expended on these two materials, and they represent a far greater burden on our total carbon footprint than most people realise. In addition to being energy-intensive, steel and concrete are heavy. If we consider instead the building blocks of the natural world, we see materials that are lightweight and that are produced with relatively low energy input under ambient temperature and pressure conditions. The building blocks of nature are completely recyclable, and a relatively small number of building blocks can be put together in a wide variety of ways to make materials for very different functions Dr Michelle Oyen explores these building blocks and look at examples in nature of how we might rethink how we build our future cities.