Production of Light Weight Blocks Using Rice Husk
International Journal of Environment and Climate Change,
Affordable housing has remained a major challenge in Nigeria, as housing costs have continued to rise beyond the reach of the low income population. This paper explores the use of waste products like rice husk as alternative materials for housing construction. Rice husk is abundant as a waste product in areas where rice is processed commercially in Southeast Nigeria. The aim of the study is to create rice husk blocks that are cheap, lightweight, and appropriate for use in low income housing construction. The study was conducted through experimentation in the Building Technology workshop of Federal Polytechnic Nekede. A series of trial mixes were done involving a wide range of materials and mix proportions. Rice husk, Portland cement, and cassava starch, were found to be the most appropriate components for the blocks. The blocks produced were of good appearance, and lightweight. Five samples of solid core blocks measuring 150x150x150mm were tested in Strength of Materials laboratory of the Federal University of Technology Owerri. The average compressive strength of the blocks was 0.26N/mm2, which is below the Nigerian Industrial Standard NIS 87:2007. The blocks produced were considered appropriate for use as non-load bearing partitions and not structural walls. The result of the study is promising because the rice husk blocks help address the waste management problem in affected areas, and could also be an important component of a potentially useful material. This paper recommends further research in the area of improving the strength of the blocks, to make them usable as structural components in low rise buildings.
- rice husk
- waste reduction
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