09/15/2022 at 13:26


    How to build in a simple, cheap and sustainable way

    Bioconstruction is the future. The current building systems are directly unsustainable and are destined to disappear, although surely in the long term. The extraction of materials and natural resources, the polluting emissions in manufacturing and transportation, the generation of waste and other impacts make construction a true environmental problem from start to finish. However, to erect buildings it is not necessary to generate so much impact. The green building appears as a return to the origins, more sustainable, and with unsuspected capabilities. The super adobe It is a booming technique in many countries.

    Wood or straw are some techniques that are on the rise. But also adobe, which is a material consisting of soil compacted with organic materials such as corn, hay and manure. It is one of the oldest building materials in the world, although its components can vary.

    Image of the walls made with sacks of earth | Seeding Architecture

    However, now the use of superadobe, which is also made from earth and organic materials, is beginning to gain strength, but in this case the mixture is reinforced with lime and then compressed in bags polypropylene (the same material used to make sand flood defenses).

    These bags are stacked on top of each other and, between layer and layer, barbed wire is placed. This keeps the bags in place and thus the walls of the structure are shaped.

    It is estimated that superadobe houses can last for centuries, as they are resistant even to earthquakesand its production is low cost.

    Furthermore, it is not an experiment with an uncertain future: it has been used successfully for years. Superadobe has been used for everything from structures built by Oxfam in the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan, to the Ojai Foundation educational center in California, USA.

    Savings in air conditioning

    Its air conditioning properties are another point in favor. Adobe is a thermal material that it captures the heat of the day and releases it into the structure at night. At night it does the opposite.: absorbs the cold and releases it during the day.

    Interior of a house made with superadobe | Reddit

    For the construction of a house, materials have to be mixed and then stepped on (to compact them), which sometimes requires the use of several people or animals. Depending on the size of the house and the number of people involved in the tasks, the work can last from several days to several weeks.

    The savings obtained in air conditioning, the resistance to hurricanes and earthquakes, the use of cheap natural materials, the absence of waste and the fact that professionals are not needed for construction make this technique a system with more and more followers.

    The superadobe was created by Nader Khalili, an Iranian living in California (USA) who trained as an architect and later traveled the deserts of Iran to learn traditional construction techniques.

    His son, Sheefteh Khalili, has followed suit and is the co-director of the Cal Earth Institute, an NGO founded by his father that teaches people how to build sustainable, disaster-resistant homes using just the land.

    A house made with superadobe | Cal Earth

    “According to my father, the earth is really gold: 90% of the materials needed to build a shelter for people are in the earth itself& rdquor ;, Sheefteh Khalili told the BBC.

    How do you build a superadobe house?

    The steps to follow are really simple:

    1. Locate the house in a stable ground.

    two.The base is excavated of the future house, where the foundations will go.

    3.Bags filled with earth or sand are preparedwhich will make up the ‘bricks’ of the walls.

    Four.The sacks are piling uplinked together by barbed wire or other systems that ensure their fastening.

    5. They are leaving the window and door openings.

    6.When the structure is finished, covered with a mixture of sand or earth and waterthus creating a solid mud that will be applied on the bags to create the ‘facade’.

    Housing example | Jose Andres Vallejo

    7.That same mixture will serve to create the floor of the houseshape door and window frames, build a porch and other accessories.

    8.Ethe roof of the house it can be done by progressively ‘closing’ the walls towards the center, so that it will form a kind of dome with the same bags.


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