MIT researchers discover way to move 25 ton stones with only their hands
 

MIT researchers discover way to move 25 ton stones with only their hands

cambridge-based firm matter design has unveiled research on seemingly ‘weightless’ concrete forms that can be easily moved. realised in collaboration with construction-research company CEMEX global R&D, the pair have discovered a way of rotating mammoth stones that would otherwise rely on cranes or heavy equipment.

MIT researchers discover way to move 25 ton stones with only their hands matter design studio designboom brandon clifford

images courtesy of matter design

 

 

the design lab’s principal brandon clifford detailed their findings during a talk at TED’s 2019 conference which is being held in vancouver. video documentation of their research illustrates the possibility of moving large concrete forms and assembling them into multi-level platforms, walls, and even staircases. using rounded edges and handle points the components can be easily rocked, tilted, and rolled into place.

MIT researchers discover way to move 25 ton stones with only their hands matter design studio designboom brandon clifford

 

 

the research looks at the density of massive masonry units (MMU’s) and their center of mass. by using variable density concrete, the center of mass is calibrated precisely to control their stability. this ensures that these massive elements successfully walk and assemble into place.

MIT researchers discover way to move 25 ton stones with only their hands matter design studio designboom brandon clifford

 

 

in 2014 researchers at the design lab, many of whom are from MIT, began studying the way ancient civilizations built giant structures. the architects were inspired by moai statues on easter island, which weigh up to 82 tons a piece and were reportedly moved by walking themselves.

 

janus, american academy in rome
video by matter design

 

 

matter design studio has created two projects in collaboration with CEMEX, janus and walking assembly, which demonstrate methods for assembling massive construction elements without the use of a crane. the architects were inspired by moai statues on easter island, which weigh up to 82 tons a piece and were reportedly moved by walking themselves.

MIT researchers discover way to move 25 ton stones with only their hands matter design studio designboom brandon clifford

 

 

real-life applications could make it both easier and cheaper to build in areas that are difficult to access. it could also make it simpler to assemble and disassemble structures built using these materials, therefore avoiding the need to demolish them and instead make new configurations.

MIT researchers discover way to move 25 ton stones with only their hands matter design studio designboom brandon clifford

MIT researchers discover way to move 25 ton stones with only their hands matter design studio designboom brandon clifford

 

 

project info

 

research lab: matter design studio

collaborator: CEMEX

project: janus / walking assembly

  • MIT researches advanced to stone age !

    Radoslaw Szabla says:
  • Interesting, and logical, regarding the recently manufactured, special concrete forms. But the megalithic structures in Peru are not of concrete but of granite and other hard and heavy stone.

    Gregory Deyermenjian says:
  • This principle is very similar to how the Ancients “walked” the stones into place on Easter Island.

    Ms. D says:
  • mit invents the curve- concrete block rolls over and crushes worker…

    ben strawn says:
  • So we are not going to give credit of discovery to the Inca in Peru?

    Jasmine says:
  • due to the recent earthquake, be advised of possible blocks walking by your street for the next hour… 🙂

    bibi says:

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