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Evaluation of the thermal performance of an innovative prefabricated natural plant fibre building system


Reference:

Shea, A. D., Wall, K. and Walker, P., 2013. Evaluation of the thermal performance of an innovative prefabricated natural plant fibre building system. Building Services Engineering Research and Technology, 34 (4), pp. 369-380.

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    Official URL:

    http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0143624412450023

    Abstract

    Energy efficient new and retrofit building construction relies heavily on the use of thermal insulation. A focus on the environmental performance of current construction materials with regards to both embodied energy and energy in-use has resulted in a growing interest in the use of natural fibre insulation materials. The results of heat flow meter thermal conductivity tests on a range of straw samples of different densities are presented. The innovative use of straw in the development of a prefabricated straw-bale panel and the results of guarded hot-box testing are presented. In common with most building materials, there is a degree of uncertainty in the thermal conductivity due to the influences of temperature, moisture content and density; however, from evaluation of a range of the literature and experimental data, a value of 0.064W/mK is proposed as a representative design value for straw bales at the densities used in building construction. Computer simulation and experimental testing suggest that the overall heat transfer coefficient (U-value) for the complete prefabricated panel is approximately 0.178W/m2K. This article also briefly discusses the use of this innovative unit in a highly instrumented test building constructed at the University of Bath.

    Details

    Item Type Articles
    CreatorsShea, A. D., Wall, K. and Walker, P.
    DOI10.1177/0143624412450023
    DepartmentsFaculty of Engineering & Design > Architecture & Civil Engineering
    Research CentresBRE Centre in Innovative Construction Materials
    RefereedYes
    StatusPublished
    ID Code30137

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