RElab 2022: could 3D printing fix construction’s waste problem?

A startup that cuts material and emissions in concrete by up to 90% with 3D printing is among nine selected for the latest RElab scale-up programme, dominated by construction and sustainability innovations.

Finnish startup Hyperion Robotics produces 3D printed reinforced concrete components using recycled waste from mining, steel, wood, coal and concrete.

The team provides the software and equipment needed to ‘print’ concrete on construction sites in a process that, it says, can cut materials by 75%, lead-time by 50% and carbon emissions by 90%.

Hyperion is one of nine startups that will take part in the third 14- week RElab scale-up programme, led by Goldacre, Noé Group’s VC arm.

Supported by Kier, Knight Frank and Landsec – among other partners – the programme gives participants an initial £100,000 investment and access to mentorship, expertise surgeries and investment introductions with key contacts in the industry.

The 2022 cohort features:

Arx Screenshot

Startup | Arx

What is it? | A cyber-risk management platform that allows corporate users to identify, evaluate and risk-score their suppliers and other third-party contacts

What problem it fixes | Potentially disruptive cybersecurity risks and complex regulatory environments

Location | UK

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Startup | ASDRO

What is it? | A startup that offers drone-powered surface and sub-surface surveying

What problem it fixes | Long project times and the challenge of surveying areas that are difficult or dangerous to access

Location | Germany

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Startup | Avvir

What is it? | An AI platform that quantifies and evaluates construction site progress and quality

What problem it fixes | Identifies potential risks and slowdowns on a site and saves money through automation

Location | US

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Startup | Cambridge Carbon Capture

What is it? | Technology that removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and converts it into usable, versatile and marketable material that is strong, lightweight and fire and water resistant

What problem it fixes | Cost of removing and storing carbon emissions

Location | UK

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Startup | Hyperion Robotics

What is it? A robotic system that 3D prints reinforced concrete structures, eliminating waste by up to 90% and cost and execution time by up to 70%

What problem it fixes | Waste and inefficiency within construction projects, especially as focus shifts to cutting embodied carbon

Location | Finland

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Startup | Podaris

What is it? | A real-time collaboration platform for planners, engineers, policymakers and public stakeholders working in transport infrastructure

What problem it fixes | The difficulty for stakeholders to work together and easily share information throughout a project

Location | UK

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Startup | Rebartek

What is it? | A tool that automates rebar installation and produces bespoke reinforcement cages using an automated robotic manufacturing process to deliver precision rebar cages on short notice

What problem it fixes | Safety risks on construction sites, long installation times, waste and cost of installation

Location | Norway

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Startup | Voyage Control

What is it? | A cloud-based platform to manage, optimise, track and communicate deliveries, streamlining users’ end-to-end logistics and supply chain

What problem it fixes | Simplifies site operation management, increases users’ awareness of security and environmental compliance and reduces inefficiencies in processes related to site deliveries

Location | UK

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Startup | Ynomia

What is it? | A tool to turn worksites into digital twins, allowing users to locate people, materials, plant and equipment in real-time

What problem it fixes | Cuts down build times and reduces on-site safety risks by giving users better oversight of everything that is going on

Location | Australia

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Fionnuala Hogan, founder of RElab, said: “With our partners, our vision is to create an international scale-up programme, supporting exceptional innovators from across the globe and building deep collaboration across industry, investment and entrepreneurs.

“As the pandemic has shown, the world is constantly changing and we and our partners are passionate about being part of creating a more sustainable smart built world.”

David Bloom, founding partner of Goldacre, added: “It is great to be back with the third instalment of our RElab programme. Once again, we have been highly impressed by the diverse range of talent from this year’s cohort – all of whom have compelling solutions for the build environment.

“Alongside our committed industry partners, these companies are in a tremendous position to take their ideas and businesses to the next level. Watch this space.”

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