KIIT Bhubaneswar, IIT Hyderabad Develop Bio-Bricks From Agro Waste

Researchers from KIIT Bhubaneswar and IIT Hyderabad have jointly developed bio-bricks from agricultural waste products. The development serves the dual purpose of waste management and development of eco-friendly, sustainable building materials, said a news report.

“The process of making bio-bricks starts with a careful selection of dry agro-waste such as paddy straw, sugarcane bagasse and cotton plant. We decided to use dry bagasse for the first sample,” said Priyabrata Rautray, PhD scholar, Design Department, IIT Hyderabad, who was part of the two-member team, which conducted the research.

“Bio-bricks are not only more sustainable than clay bricks, but are also carbon sinks, because they fix more carbon dioxide than they produce during their life-cycle,” said Avik Roy, Assistant Professor, KIIT School of Architecture, Bhubaneswar, the second member of the research two-member team.

He further added that although bio-bricks are not as strong as burnt clay bricks and cannot be used directly to build load-bearing structures, they can be used in low-cost housing with the combination of wooden or metal structural framework.

The researchers said the bricks provide good insulation from heat and sound and help in maintaining the humidity in buildings, making the houses suitable for hot-humid climates like India.

“Other than as bio-bricks, this material can be used as panel boards or insulation boards and as designs.  We could explore such applications for this sustainable material,” added Rautray. They also informed that they would continue their research to improve the load-bearing capacity of the bricks.

Bio-bricks received a special recognition trophy for sustainable housing at the ‘Rural Innovators Start-Up Conclave 2019’, organised recently by National Institute of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj (NIRDPR) Hyderabad.

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