ReCon: Development of a resilient hook-and-loop-fastening-system for the adaptable assembly of building components in the building industry

Systemic examination of the hook-and-loop fastener and building component interfaces for the development of a resilient fastening system between parts/components with different functions and lifespan. The desired result serves to verify the fastening system and forms a basis for further research and establishment in the building industry.

Short Description

Starting point / motivation

Climate neutrality in the building industry requires a holistic approach such as resilience and circular economy, and thus buildings with the ability to adapt to new requirements resulting, among other things, from climatic changes and changes in function and use.

However, common joining methods, construction and planning practices result in heterogeneous material composites and buildings optimized towards efficiency, making them adapted to only one use as inflexible as their situational adaptation. Likewise, there is currently hardly any corresponding information or data on built in building components, and data management is difficult with regard to resilient buildings and the city as a "building component-/material resource".

Contents and goals

To reach climate neutrality, this project proposes to establish the hook-and-loop-fastening-system as a resilient and intelligent joining system in the building industry, for the effective and reconstruct able renovation of existing buildings, as well as for circular and thus reusable new buildings.

The aim of the project is to verify the applicability of the hook-and-loop-fastening-system between components of different function, also between components with short and long lifetime. A second goal is as well as materially heterogeneous components of the primary structure (structural framework) and secondary structure (finishing) and subsequently tertiary structure (TGA).

The object of investigation is formed by "hookable" structural components made of concrete and wood as well as the counterpart in the form of a "hook-and-loop mounting component". These are combined with industrial hook-and-loop components, furthermore digitalization and sensor technologies are integrated for a component data management, for example by means of material pass ports [1, 2] and digital watermarks [3].

With the aim of increasing sustainability, basic experiments are also being conducted to investigate the production of hook-and-loop components from concrete, wood and paper materials. An starting point is provided by the preceding projects "Klett-TGA" and "Piezo-Klett" as well as the dissertation "Hook-and-loop-concrete".


The project is carried out on a constructional, paper- and electrotechnical level, supplemented by the digital level. To this end, concepts are developed in two recurring phases using creativity techniques such as design techniques, brainstorming and construction methods.

Continuous research and analysis of specialized literature support this process. In addition, a potential assessment and evaluation of the concepts is carried out on the basis of a utility value analysis, as well as a verification of selected concepts in the laboratory, on the basis of manufacturing tests, mechanical tests and simulations.

Expected results

The desired result is a verification of the fastening system by selected application-specific mechanical measurement data on ultimate, serviceability and/or durability. As well as through qualitative analysis of the empirical values from the manufacture of the test specimens or samples of hook-and-loop components made of concrete, wood and paper materials, as well as through the development of technological approaches of a component data management at component interfaces.

In addition, transdisciplinary knowledge is expected to be gained with regard to the application of the hook-and-loop-fastening-system in architecture and the building industry as well as innovative component manufacturing.

[1] Heinrich, M./Lang, W.: Materials Passports – Best Practise (BAMB), 2019
[2] Dourlens-Quaranta, S./Carbonari, G./De Groote, M./Borragán, G./De Regel, S./Toth, Z./Volt, J./Glicker, J.: Study on the Develompent of a European Union Framework for Digital Building Logbooks – FINAL REPORT, Belgium 2020
[3] AIM – European Brands Association: Digital Watermarks/Initiative HolyGrail 2.0, Brüssel 2021

Project Partners

Project management

Graz University of Technology, Institute of Architecture Technology

Project or cooperation partners

  • Graz University of Technology, Laboratory for Structural Engineering
  • Graz University of Technology, Institute of Bioproducts and Paper Technology
  • Axtesys GmbH, Graz
  • NET-Automation GmbH, Zeltweg

Contact Address

Graz University of Technology
Institute of Architecture Technology
Rechbauerstr. 12/I
A-8010 Graz

Univ.-Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Architekt Roger Riewe (project manager)
Tel.: +43 (316) 873 6300

Dipl.-Ing. Dr.techn. Matthias Raudaschl (deputy project manager)
Tel.: +43 (316) 873 6808

Dipl.-Ing. Toni Levak (University Assistant)
Tel.: +43 (316) 873 6307