Fungi Concrete


By: Jasen Vu

A new type of concrete made up of fungi that heals itself was co-developed by researchers at Binghamton University, State University of New York. Congrui Jin, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Binghamton University, has been researching concrete and found that the biggest problems can come from the smallest of cracks. They used a fungus called Trichoderma reesei. The fungus stays stationary when mixed in with concrete until the concrete is cracked.

When the concrete cracks, water and oxygen gets in. That water and oxygen grow the mixed in fungus. The fungus then precipitates calcium carbonate to heal the cracks. After the crack heals, the fungi will stay stationary again and form more spores.

Their research is still in the early stages however, and the main concern being the survivability of the fungus under harsh conditions. The team is still hopeful that more adjustments will get it working.

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