STRUCTURE, FORM AND CONSTRUCTION: Fabric formwork for concrete

Remo Pedreschi, Daniel Lee

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


This paper presents a summary of some recent research into optimized structural forms for concrete beams and columns. The formwork was constructed using flexible woven fabrics. Fabric formwork has been shown to be very effective as formwork, being efficient in materials, improving the quality of the concrete and facilitating the production of complex geometries that would otherwise be expensive to construct using conventional rigid materials. The paper provides a brief overview of the use of flexible formwork and presents summaries of two recent studies: into the development of a form-active efficient beam and a study of non-prismatic columns under axial load. The study of the beam indicated that the embodied energy could be reduced by over 30% when compared to comparable rectangular beam. The strength of columns is influenced considerably by shape with significant increase in strength with non-prismatic tapered shapes compared to cylindrical prismatic columns with the same total volume of concrete. In both cases the complex three-dimensional shapes were simple and economic to construct using flexible woven textiles.
Original languageEnglish
Pages99 -110
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 13 Dec 2014
EventArchitectural Science Association 48th Int Conf. - Italy, Genoa, Italy
Duration: 10 Dec 201413 Dec 2014


ConferenceArchitectural Science Association 48th Int Conf.


  • Architecture
  • Science
  • Construction
  • concrete
  • fabric
  • formwork


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  • Recasting Modernism

    Remo Pedreschi (Speaker)

    17 Mar 2015

    Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesPublic Engagement – Public lecture/debate/seminar


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