Mother Earth Living

The Good Life

All things Mother Earth Living

Hemp-Lime Building Tested for Energy-Efficiency

10/14/2010 12:00:00 AM

Tags: energy efficiency, hemp-lime, hemp, HemPod, green building

When mixed with lime, hemp makes a durable building material. Hemp-lime composite provides strength while also absorbing carbon, making it a great building block for zero-carbon homes. Now, researchers with the BRE Centre for Innovative Construction Materials at the University of Bath are testing the hemp-lime material’s energy-efficiency. Although several hemp-lime composite buildings have been constructed, the researchers hope to pull scientific data that will persuade the mainstream building industry to use the material more widely.

HemPod 
For the next 18 months, researchers at the University of Bath will monitor the HemPod to see how well its hemp-lime walls insulate. Photo Courtesy University of Bath. 

The researchers constructed a one-story hemp-lime building, the HemPod, with walls made from hemp’s woody core, held together with a lime-based binder. For the next 18 months the researchers will closely monitor the HemPod’s indoor temperature and humidity to see how well hemp-lime walls insulate and allow moisture to pass through.

Hemp-lime should provide good thermal mass, making the building energy efficient. The wall’s breathability should act as a passive air conditioning system, keeping humidity inside the hemp structure constant at all times.

Hemp provides a healthy alternative to other building materials as it requires no pesticides or fertilizers and little water to grow. Hemp and lime both absorb carbon, and the lime binder also increases fire resistance. Using hemp as a building material could also open up a new agricultural market and provide economic benefits to farmers—although not yet. Hemp cultivation is illegal in the United States.



Related Content

Journey Toward Healthy Hair: The Healing Seed

Not too long ago I discovered The Healing Seed, a new company that offers virgin organic hempseed oi...

Hemp for Homes

Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains how hemp, a renewable resource, can aid ...

Green Your Life: How to Make Homemade Breadcrumbs and Croutons

Don't throw away that leftover loaf of bread! Use it to make homemade breadcrumbs and croutons. Wast...

Hemp Concrete: Promising New Green Building Material

Tradical Hempcrete, a concrete-like substance made from hemp and lime, is used in two Asheville, Nor...

Content Tools
RSS




Post a comment below.

 



Subscribe today and save 50%

First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
Country:
Email:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living!

Welcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $14.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $19.95.