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Need for New Materials in the Construction Industry

Discuss and give a detailed report on need of new material in the Construction Industry to understand how they would prove to be helpful in building a stronger and long-lasting building.

Answer

Need for new materials in the construction industry

Abstract

This paper would give a brief about the different new age materials used in the construction industry and how they would prove to be helpful in building a stronger and long-lasting building. One will discuss some of the important materials along with all of their details including their process of work and how they can prove to be helpful for us. 

1. Introduction

Like any other industry, the construction industry is also undergoing a change. With the discovery of many environmentally friendly, affordable and long lasting materials, the buildings that are now being constructed is as never before. Many companies are investing in the research and development of new technologies so that they can construct buildings that are not only good in quality but are also affordable and long-lasting (Khatib, 2016). 

2.Review of related work

2.1 Self-healing bio-concrete

Concrete is one of the most popular elements that are used as a construction material and this has a high tendency to develop cracks. The lifetime of the concretes gets reduced with the development of cracks and it would need a huge cost in case of replacement. The possibility of preventing cracks is very less, however, the development in technology has found out various ways to heal the same (Belle, 2017). 

2.2 Organic building materials

The materials used for constructing buildings cause a huge amount of pollution to the environment. With the increasing use of chemicals, human life is coming to a risk and more people are falling sick. Organic materials like straw, wood, bamboo, clay etc are good for the environment and prove to be beneficial for human life as well. The organic materials grow up from the seeds and while growing up, they absorb carbon dioxide which is not only great for the outer but also the inner environment of the house (Ball, 2014).

2.3 Pollution absorbing brick

Brick Kilns generates a lot of pollutions, so in order to combat the same, these special bricks have been introduced. They are made from the 70% waste of leftover boiler ash, which would other ways clog up the landfills. The rest 30% of the brick is made up of lime, Sodium Hydrocarbonate and clay. They take the help of alkali activation for power and does not require any fire. These bricks literally have pollution vacuums in them which is designed to be a part of a building’s ventilation system (Smol et al., 2015).

2.4 Light generating Cement

This cement can absorb and radiate light. This new age technology of cement has many potential and its way of application is huge. With the evolution of the construction industry, new technologies are developed daily so as to create structures that are energy efficient. These cements are widely used in places like parking lots, swimming pools, safety signs drawn on the road and many more. This cement is created through a process by which raw materials are polycondensed like industrial waste, river sand, silica, alkali, and water (Akadiri, 2018). The energy usage is really low as this process is performed in a room temperature. Normal cement contains flakes of crystal that block the sunlight coming in whereas the light generating cement does not contain those flakes and allows the sunlight to pass through them and get it absorbed deeply. Throughout the day, the cement takes in all the light and absorbs the same within itself. At night, the excited electrons inside the cement relax and emit light that lasts up to 12 hours without the help of any electricity.

3.Problem Statement-

In this article, one will try to find out what these new construction materials are and how can they help in efficient construction aspects. But before that, one would need to have a quick glance at the factors that help in choosing a perfect material for a building. The factors include strength, durability, availability, how easily it can be transported, and workability of the material, the costs, the aesthetics, the safety measures involved with it and the ease of maintaining the same. Given below are some of the new age materials that are more environmentally friendly. Hence, the problem statement is to critically evaluate all four material with special emDphasize on advantage and disadvantage.

4. Data Analysis

Self-healing bio-concrete

However recent studies have shown that most of the prevention techniques use polymers and chemicals which have a very adverse effect not only on the overall health of the building but also on the environment in the long run. Moreover, the protections provided by these chemicals have a very short-term effect. Thus the methods which are long-term yet environment-friendly are always high on demand. One such method is the self-healing bio concretes where the healing agents in the concrete remain dormant while placing and mixing and it becomes active once these agents get in direct contact with water (Pacheco et al., 2014). These agents who can heal the cracks are as long-lasting as 200 years and they are environmental friendly as well. The healing agents in bio-concrete produce limestone or CaCO3 that helps in filling up the cracks in the concrete. When the cracks come in contact with water, the bacteria that were dormant in the concrete becomes active and starts to germinate. These multiplied bacteria feed on the lactate and help in forming the limestone that would seal the crack. 

Advantages 

  • This process does not require any external aide and the concrete gets repaired through self-repairing.
  • The compressive and flexural strength increases significantly compared to normal concretes.
  • Attacks of freeze-thaw can be resisted.
  • The permeability feature of the concrete is reduced.
  • Steels get corroded due to cracks, the bio-concrete helps in reducing corrosion and make the steel durable.
  • The bacteria used in this are environmentally friendly and does not possess any threat to human life.

Disadvantages

  • These bio concretes are expensive.
  • Bacterial growth is not good for any media or atmosphere.

Factors that affect its usage

  • The process is still under development so this concrete is not used widely.
  • It is really very hard to predict the perfect cost of this product.
  • It is still under test whether this concrete can be used for all types of buildings like bridges and highways or not (Gosselin et al., 2016).
  • The longevity of the product is still under question.
  • The safety factor of this concrete is still under scrutiny.

Organic building materials

They not only look trendy but also help in building strong and durable homes. They are no less than normal concrete homes in terms of comfort but helps people to live in a more environmentally friendly way and at an efficient cost.

Advantages

  • This is an efficient way to reduce pollution and helps people to live in a more sustainable environment.
  • This helps in increasing the efficiency of materials, water retention and maintaining the quality of air both inside and outside the house (Fucic et al., 2018).
  • They have higher resale value as well as additional tax benefits.
  • These houses require less electricity as they are cooler and filled with more natural lighting.

Disadvantages

  • This material requires many resources as well as an increased investment in them (Hughes et al., 2015).
  • To build and maintain these houses, special equipment is required which are not abundantly available.

The total emissions that are given out from the building are from cooling, heating as well as ventilation. This also includes the energy that is used in creating the materials of the building. With a little bit of maintenance, these organically build houses can last for a longer time. These houses are therefore sustainable and do not compromise on style. 

Pollution absorbing brick

These bricks suck in the polluted air and in turn, releases air which is filtered. The center of each brick is equipped with cyclone filtration system that collects the heavy particles in the air and brings them down to a removable hopper. The design of this brick greatly resembles the vacuums that are designed in a windowed wall or in the cooling system. This technology can easily fit in the new age construction methods (Rashid & Yusoff, 2015). The tunnel tests proved that these bricks can filter up to 30% of fine particles and 100% of dust particles.

Advantages

  • These bricks help in controlling air pollution.
  • These bricks are constructed from wastes and are natural.
  • These bricks are energy efficient as well.

Disadvantages

  • They only filter the air that comes in contact with them and cannot pull any air on its own. Researchers are working effectively in this field.

Light generating Cement

Advantages

  • These cements are widely used in road safety signs as they glow at night and can be observed from distance which helps in preventing an accident.
  • The cement is energy efficient as it uses energy from sunlight and does not require any electricity (Hammond, 2018).
  • The organic materials used for making this cement are environmentally friendly.
  • Another benefit of this cement is its longevity.

Disadvantages

  • The cement is not at all affordable.
  • Not everyone is capable of using this product, so people with special skills are required in order to use this cement.

Research and development are still in progress for this product as it is going to bring a revolution in the architectural world which would not only help in saving energy but also would enhance the beauty of the roads at night. However, funding is one of the constraints that the researchers are facing in this phase.

5.Methodology

The methodology of research followed in this paper is basic research which has been done to enhance knowledge. The main aim behind writing this paper is to expand my knowledge and find out various methods of the new age architectural knowledge. Here the researcher has first given an introduction about materials that are good for constructions and then each of the new age materials for constructing buildings were taken and they were scrutinized on the basis of the work they do, how they do that, any added point that one should know along with its various advantages and disadvantages. Hence, Literature review is taken as research methodology in which previous studies will be analysed deeply.

6. Conclusion

Buildings are something that is constructed once with lots of time, money and energy invested in it. One would always want something that is not only durable but also would be safe which one of the most important factors is. Safety not only implies to strong buildings with resistance from fire and other safety measures but also the buildings that are safe for the environment. Researchers now days are working effectively to look upon this particular aspect and develop some environmental friendly building materials which our atmosphere can sustain. These materials would not only be good for our surrounding and our health but also would provide all the features that are provided by a building made up of synthetic and chemical materials. There are various factors that are considered before deciding upon any material. For example, climate and region, if one goes on a hilly area one will mostly see buildings made up of wood where the plane areas witness buildings that are mostly constructed on concretes. Some of the common environmental friendly material includes recycled steel which is environmentally friendly, can sustain high winds and earthquakes which makes it a perfect choice for buildings in areas prone to natural calamities. Another environmentally friendly option is wood as it is light, easy to be transported and can be designed in multiple ways but the main problem with this is, it leads to deforestation which is not at all good for the earth and these houses are very much prone to catch up the fire. The last one is the most widely used material which is brick. They are cost effective and environmentally safe as well but it has its vulnerabilities in damp conditions, it is brittle and really heavy. Hence one can see that all the materials have its own advantages and disadvantages, researchers are taking up these materials, and with the help of their innovative mind and technology, are creating products that are not only good for the environment but also have all the other related features of being a good material. One hope that in the future, one will see many more efficient materials made for the construction industry which would lead to the much more efficient building being made on this planet that would suffice all needs.

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