TU Dresden RWTH Leibniz Institut

Construction competition 2023 of Transregio 280

Winner of the construction competition

Leonie Mester from the Chair of Structural Analysis and Structural Dynamics of RTWH Aachen (project C03) wins the "Construction Award 2023". Her 1 m long and 18.5 kg light carbon-reinforced conrete specimen withstood a load of 25 kN. Congratulations to Leonie Mester on her success!



The competition is organized by the Collaborative Research Center/Transregio 280 "Design Strategies for Material-Minimised Carbon-Reinforced Concrete Structures—Principles of a New Approach to Construction," funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) since July 2020.


Competition topic

Concrete is basically simple, quick and inexpensive to produce, it can take on almost any shape and is the only building material that is also used extensively in developing and emerging countries. The Transregio 280 deals with a new way of building. The strategy development is aimed at developing innovative concepts and intelligent constructions made of carbon-reinforced concrete. Suitable methods for the design, such as modeling and construction with new materials, therefore require profound basic research.

Competition goal

We are looking for a beam made of carbon-reinforced concrete with a minimized consumption of materials. The component should be made of non-metallic reinforcement and mineral matrix material and, thanks to its optimized geometry and cross-sectional design, achieve the highest possible load-bearing capacity with minimal self-weight and small deformations under use loads.

Technical data

• Maximum component dimensions: 10 × 20 × 120 cm³
• Maximum weight of the beam: 20 kg
• Static system: single-span beam with load application in the center of the span, free span 1 m


The winning beam is determined by a (destructive) load test. The submitted specimens are tested in a standardized test process by independent employees of the Institute for Structural Concrete at RWTH Aachen University. In addition to the load-bearing capacity, the deformation when half the load is reached is evaluated to assess the performance characteristics. The mass of the specimens is calculated before the test begins. To identify the winning component, the load-bearing performance TP of all submitted beams is determined using the following calculation formula:

TP = FTest2 / (w·G)

FTest = breaking load determined in the test
w = deflection at a load level of ½ FTest
G = self weight of the component

The component with the highest TP wins the competition.

Awarding authority

Transregio 280

  • Spokesperson: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Dr.-Ing. E.h. Manfred Curbach
    TU Dresden, Institute of Concrete Structures, D-01062 Dresden (Germany)
  • Deputy Spokesperson: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Josef Hegger
    RWTH Aachen University, Institute of Structural Concrete, Mies-van-der-Rohe-Str. 1, D-52074 Aachen (Germany)

Conditions of participation

General information

• The competition is addressed to students and academic staff of civil engineering and architecture
• Prize: participation in an international research conference
• Participation: form to imb@imb.rwth-aachen.de
• Contact: Ms. Alvarez, imb@imb.rwth-aachen.de
• Address for submissions: Dipl.-Ing. Jochen Wessel, Mies-van-der-Rohe-Str.1, Halle C, Raum 008, D-52074 Aachen (Germany)


German or English

Important dates

• Participation request via mail until: June 1, 2023 (extended until June 30, 2023)
• Submission of test specimens: September 1, 2023
• Award ceremony: September 26, 2023 as part of the DAfStb research colloquium in Aachen

Documents to be submitted

The competition entries must be submitted in anonymized form so that an independent assessment is possible. You should therefore define a code number for your entry, consisting of two letters and two numbers, e.g. AB12. The code number should be attached to the entry on an A4 sheet of paper and avoid any reference to your name, your university affiliation or your supervisors.

Binding: Submission of the signed declaration of participation and copyright (Annex 1 and Annex 2). All submissions are to be created by the participants themselves and are therefore free of third-party rights.