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Laboratory for Building Materials

Detail Luftporenmessgerät
© Oliver Schneider

In the laboratory for building materials, practical laboratory exercises are used to clearly supplement the courses of the department of Civil Engineering on building materials, concrete technology and concrete repair. In addition, the laboratory takes on assignments for materials testing and building materials inventory of existing building fabric.


The laboratory for building materials primarily carries out the following projects:

  • Investigation of the properties of mineral and metallic building materials (strength, modulus of elasticity, hardness, etc.)
  • Protection and repair of concrete structures
  • Assessment of building materials and determination of damage to all types of structures
  • Non-destructive / low-destructive testing methods
  • Metallographic examinations

Lecture-accompanying laboratory exercises, practicals and projects

The main task of the Building Materials Laboratory is to supplement the material taught in the compulsory lectures Building Materials I/II, Concrete Technology and Concrete Repair as well as the corresponding elective courses with practical and demonstrative laboratory exercises and practicals. In addition, the laboratory provides support in the realisation of projects involving material technology issues.

Theses and research

Final theses on topics related to building materials usually have a significant experimental component. The laboratory for building materials offers interested students the opportunity to use the available equipment for their work. In addition, long-term research projects can be carried out.

Third-party funded projects by external clients

The laboratory for building materials accepts jobs for material testing and building material surveys of existing building structures, particularly for demanding and complex problems.

Testing services

The laboratory for building materials takes on assignments for materials testing and building materials inventory of existing building fabric in the following areas:

  • Fresh concrete tests for normal concrete (consistency, bulk density, LP content)
  • Fresh concrete tests for SCC (slump flow, hopper run-out time, J-ring and L-box test)
  • Hardened concrete (compressive strength, modulus of elasticity, split tensile strength, flexural tensile strength and surface tensile strength)
  • Hardened concrete (testing of drill cores)
  • Steel fibre concrete (equivalent bending tensile strength determination of the steel fibre concrete class)
  • Assessment of FTW resistance (slab test method)

  • Tensile and compressive strength
  • Hardness according to Vickers, Brinell and Rockwell
  • Notched bar impact work (assessment of brittle fracture sensitivity)
  • Pull-out tests
  • Examination of the weldability of unalloyed steels

  • Tensile, compressive and flexural strength
  • Moisture

  • Tensile, compressive and flexural strength
  • Identification of plastics

  • Stone strength, bulk density, shear bulk density
  • Mortar compressive strength of joint mortar
  • Determination of the permissible masonry compressive stress
  • Determination of masonry strength

  • Determination of salt content (NO3-,SO4-2,Cl-) of concrete, mortar, brick, masonry
  • Preparation of thin sections of mineral building materials
  • Preparation of metallographic and petrographic sections (phase analysis)
  • Analysis of hardened concrete/solid mortar to determine mixing ratios
  • Moisture analyses (determination of moisture, porosity and degree of moisture penetration)


  • Hydraulic universal strength testing machine (600 KN)
  • Ectromechanical universal testing machines (50 and 150 KN)
  • Hydraulic compression testing machines (3 and 5 MN)
  • Prismatic testing machine (10/200 KN)
  • Pendulum impact tester (300J)

  • Hardness tester (Vickers, Brinell, Rockwell)
  • Sieving machine
  • Sweep troughs
  • Reflected light microscope (with photo/video unit)
  • Drying oven (up to 250°C)
  • Muffle furnace (up to 1200°C)
  • Climatic chamber (80°C to -30°C)

  • Reinforcement finder (Profometer/Ferroscan)
  • Tensile adhesion tester (Freundl)
  • Endoscope
  • Temperature probe
  • Moisture tester (CM device, Hydromette)
  • Digi Schmidt

  • Core drill
  • Rock saw
  • Wet cutting machine
  • Grinding and polishing unit


Prof. Dr.-Ing. Klaus Pistol
Professor for Building Materials
Head of Laboratory for Building Materials
Staff Laboratory for Building Materials
Marcus Richter
Employee in the Laboratory for Building Materials