Research field
Alpine Infrastructure Constructions


As the basis for the development and use of Alpine living spaces, the region’s infrastructure constructions have special requirements and characteristics. In order to maintain Alpine living environments for the local population, the conditions for the construction of the required infrastructure often entail greater challenges than is the case elsewhere.

Ever greater attention is also being paid to the consideration of natural hazards during the development of infrastructure constructions as more frequent and more intensive extreme events are to be anticipated in future due to climate change. ‘Natural hazards’ are natural processes that pose a threat to people and the environment as well as property and assets. In particular, we focus here on the technical and bioengineering measures for providing protection against gravitational natural hazards. These include rockfalls, landslides, erosion, earthflows and avalanches.

In the area of infrastructure constructions, the objective is therefore to research which installations can serve to ensure the standard of living in Alpine regions and/or which technical protective measures can be employed to reduce the risk of an existing natural hazard.

The following activities, among others, are performed as part of our research in the area of Alpine Infrastructure Constructions:

  • the sustainable use of local knowledge and materials for the design and construction of residential and tourist buildings, such as the development of modular wooden structures for the redevelopment of hotels and disused barns;
  • the development of constructive solutions that prove successful in Alpine regions;
  • the optimisation of the bearing capacity of natural lake ice surfaces;
  • the optimisation of plant sections for the use of torrents such as catchments for the generation of hydro power;
  • the further development of building products and solutions such as geosynthetics.

The following activities, among others, are performed as part of our research in the area of Alpine Infrastructure Constructions with a specific link to natural hazards:

  • the development of building solutions to provide protection against gravitational natural hazards;
  • the protection of slopes and torrents using sustainable materials such as wood wool;
  • the further development of protective dams, nets and bridges against rockfalls, avalanches and earthflows.


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