Texoversum - Roboter erzeugen Spinnennextwerke aus Carbonfasern


components of its façade were wound from fibers with reduced use of materials

15 July, 2023

With the Texoversum, Reutlingen University has put into operation a training and innovation center for the textile industry that is unique in Europe. The almost 2,000 square meter textile-like façade of the new building also causes a sensation architecturally: It charmingly combines the innovative power of this industry with the 160-year tradition of Reutlingen as a textile location.

Robots create spider webs from carbon fibers

The components were wound from fibers that are fixed with a special plastic resin. The individual elements were designed on the computer and wound from carbon fiber by robots. Similar to networks in nature, for example in spider webs, beetle wings or palm leaves, the fiber structures are also very lightweight and at the same time highly resilient. The required use of materials is reduced to a minimum.

Texoversum Wickelroboter

“In contrast to conventional steel and concrete structures, we are able to get by with a minimum of material, because the robots only process as many fibers as are needed for the strength of the respective structure,” explains Prof. Moritz Dörstelmann, whose company FibR realized the facade of the building Texoversum.

“As a result, we also save large amounts of CO emissions.” In addition to facade construction, Dörstelmann sees advantageous applications of the technology in roof constructions, supports and, last but not least, interior design.

The necessary strength and durability of the composite is provided by Covestro’s aliphatic polyurethane resin system Desmocomp, in which the fibers are embedded as if in a matrix. “The resin is highly resistant to weathering and the sun’s high-energy UV radiation, making it very suitable for outdoor applications,” explains Pejman Norastehfar, (architect and specialist for construction applications in Covestro’s Coatings and Adhesives segment).

In the Texoversum, the spun façade performs several important functions at once: it gives the building a unique look and stabilizes the surrounding balconies. It also serves as a railing and provides the necessary shade for the glass front behind it.

The building provides approximately 3,000 square meters of space for workshops, laboratories, a textile collection, think tank space and classrooms. The costs for the construction of the Texoversum amounting to 18.5 million euros were borne by the employers’ association Südwesttextil, whose members include FibR GmbH in Kernen, east of Stuttgart.


image: The Texoversum at Reutlingen University is a reference object for a new technology that could revolutionize the construction industry: The components of its façade were wound from fibers and fixed with Covestro’s Desmocomp system. (credit: FibR GmbH)