IIT-Hyderabad Researchers Develops Bio-bricks
Priyabrata Rautray, with the Bio-Bricks at International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED-2019) at TU Delft, Netherlands
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IIT-Hyderabad Researchers Develops Bio-bricks

Conventional brick kilns are a source of air pollution, though they are critical for supplying bricks to India’s growing construction industry. Another source of pollution is the burning of crop stubbles by farmers or agricultural waste.

A new type of bio-brick made from biodegradable wastes promises to address both the problems.

A group of scientists from the Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad (IIT-H) and KIIT School of Architecture, Bhubaneshwar, have developed bricks from agro-waste products. They have developed a process to use dry waste like wheat straws, paddy straws, and sugarcane bagasse to manufacture bricks.

IIT-Hyderabad Researchers Develops Bio-bricks- The Idea

It involves chopping the debris to the desired size and adding it to the lime-based slurry to create a homogenous mixture. The mixture is poured into molds and rammed with a wooden block to make a compact brick.

These molds are left to dry for a day or two, after which the sides of the molds are removed, and the brick is allowed to dry for fifteen to twenty days. It takes almost a month for the blocks to attain strength by air drying.

However, researchers noted that the bio-bricks are not as strong as

burnt clay bricks and cannot be used directly to build load-bearing structures. Still, they can be utilized in low-cost housing in combination with the wooden or metal structural framework.

Also, these bricks can bricks provide insulation against heat and sound and help in maintaining the humidity of the buildings.

IIT-Hyderabad Researchers Develops Bio-bricks- The Advantages of Bio-bricks

The researchers said the bio-bricks are sustainable & eco-friendly. The team used 900 grams of sugarcane bagasse to make a single bio-brick. Burning this amount of the waste bagasse instead of repurposing it, would have released 639 grams of carbon dioxide. Not only can an enormous amount of carbon dioxide be prevented from getting released in the environment, but lime used in each bio-brick also absorbs 322.2 grams of carbon from the air, which makes it a carbon-negative & environment-friendly.

Rahul Mishra is a Science enthusiast and eager to learn something new each day. He has a degree in Microbiology and has joined forces with Biotecnika in 2019 due to his passion for writing and science.