Convective Concrete: additive manufacturing to facilitate activation of thermal mass


  • Dennis de Witte TU Delft, Architecture and the Built Environment
  • Ulrich Knaack TU Delft, Architecture and the Built Environment
  • Marie de Klijn-Chevalerias Eindhoven University of Technology
  • Roel Loonen Eindhoven University of Technology
  • Jan Hensen Eindhoven University of Technology
  • Gregor Zimmerman G.tecz Engineering GmbH



concrete, thermal storage capacity, thermal mass, Additive Manufacturing


Convective Concrete is about a research-driven design process of an innovative thermal mass concept. The goal is to improve building energy efficiency and comfort levels by addressing some of the shortcomings of conventional building slabs with high thermal storage capacity. Such heavyweight constructions tend to have a slow response time and do not make use of the available thermal mass effectively. Convective Concrete explores new ways of using thermal mass in buildings more intelligently. To accomplish this ondemand charging of thermal mass, a network of ducts and fans is embedded in the concrete wall element. This is done by developing customized formwork elements in combination with advanced concrete mixtures. To achieve an efficient airflow rate, the embedded lost formwork and the concrete itself function like a lung.