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for reuse
in construction


Structural Xploration Lab

By combining architecture and structural design, we pave the way for the upcycling and reuse of load-bearing components in buildings


École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL)

Smart Living Lab


Pass. du Cardinal 13b,
1700 Fribourg
, Switzerland


+41 21 695 72 18


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About us

Founded in July 2016, the Structural Xploration Lab is led by Corentin Fivet, Assistant Professor of Architecture and Structural Engineering at Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL). The laboratory is affiliated with the Faculty of Architecture, Civil and Environmental Engineering (ENAC), is part of the Institute of Architecture (IA) and has links with the Institute of Civil Engineering (IIC). The laboratory is involved in teaching structures and building systems to architects (SAR). Research in the Structural Xploration Lab aims to improve the way architects work with structural engineers to design load-bearing systems for buildings. Driven by the urgent need for greater sustainability, we are exploring new ways of doing things, developing new decision support tools, and testing new design techniques. Our recent activities have focused on designing load-bearing systems from reused and/or recyclable components. In doing so, we are pioneering academic research in the field of circular construction, with the hope that it will become the new norm for the construction industry. We identify, develop, and evaluate new circular opportunities in building design; we develop algorithms to guide the design of load-bearing systems that minimize the environmental impact of reuse; we develop indicators to assess the reusability of buildings.

Research and education topics

  • Circular structure design
  • Optimal reuse
  • Reuse of cut concrete
  • Selective deconstruction / reversible construction
  • Waste upcycling
  • Quantification of reusability and material use in
  • Building structures
  • Reusable building structures
  • Multipurpose kits with parts
  • On-site assessment