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1) Construction Technologies ( Introduction )

  • Foundations
  • Walls
  • Roofs
  • Opening supports
  • Doors and Windows

2) Foundations

  • Rammed Earth
  • Random Rubble
  • Brick Masonry
  • Split Bamboo Piles
  • Under Reamed Pile Foundation
  • Arch Foundation

i) Rammed Earth Foundation

  • Rammed earth, also known as pisé (French), is a technique used in the building of walls using the raw materials of earth, chalk, lime and gravel.
  • It is an ancient building method that has seen a revival in recent years as people seek more sustainable building materials and natural building methods.
  • Rammed earth walls are simple to construct, incombustible, thermally massive, very strong and hardwearing.
  • Conversely they can be labour-intensive to construct without machinery (powered rammers), and if improperly protected or maintained they are susceptible to water damage.
  • Traditionally, rammed earth buildings are found on every continent except Antarctica.
  • From temperate and wet regions of north Europe to semi dry deserts, mountain areas and the tropics.
  • The availability of useful soil and building design for the local climatic conditions are the factors which favour its use.
  • Rammed earth foundations are made of well graded soil; preferably with a stabiliser for water resistance and higher strength.
  • The site must be well drained and great care is needed to protect the foundation from ground moisture, especially with a plastic foil or bitumen felt.
  • Bitumen paint, or a facing of rubble stone or burnt bricks are alternatives.
  • When in doubt about suitability of rammed earth foundations, they should not be used.
  • Stabilised soil blocks can be used instead, but similar protective measures are necessary.
  • Wherever possible, the earth foundation should be placed on a concrete footing.
  • The foundation is made in formwork, in the same way as the walls: layers of 10 cm soil are tamped down to 6 – 7 cm, before the next layer is filled up.

ii) Random Rubble Foundation

  • These foundations are made of rubble (undressed stone).
  • The quality of mortar is of importance to achieve good strength. An example of a good mix is:
    – 4 parts cement,
    – 1 part lime,
    – 12 parts clean sand, and
    – sufficient water to make a workable mix.
  • Construction should start on firm, uniform strong subsoil. It should not be started on grass, black fertile soil, filled up materials or mud.
  • Under the foundation there should be a layer of lean concrete (min. 5 cm) or tamped sand; minimum depth 40 cm.
  • In earthquake areas, reinforcement with wire mesh or steel rods is required, but professional advice should be sought.

iii) Brick Foundation


iv) Split Bamboo Piles

  • Split-bamboo piles filled up with loosely wound coconut coir strands of about 6 mm diameter each tied up with spirally wound jute thread along its length and wrapped with a layer of thickly knit jute burlap have been successfully used.
  • Treated split-bamboo steps were holed at random points and tied up together at regular intervals with galvanized iron wire after putting the coconut coir wicks inside along its entire length.
  • These specially made split-bamboo piles are used in stabilizing the soft compressible subsoil of an actual construction site which consists of a top layer of about 2 m thick soft to medium stiff sandy clayey silt underlain by a layer of about 6 m thick very soft silty clay which is again underlain by a layer of medium dense silty clayey sand.
  • The split-bamboo piles, each about 8 m long, 80 to 90 mm diameter, are driven by a drop hammer at 2 m spacing in a square grid. After installation of the piles the entire area is covered with about 2 m surcharge of sandy materials.

v) Under Reamed Pile Foundation

  • Such type of foundations is ideally suitable in the areas where the black cotton soil or expansive soil is beyond 2.50 metres.
  • The basic principle of under reamed pile is to anchor the structure at a depth where ground movement is negligible due to moisture variation or other reasons.
  • Simple tools are required for construction of under-reamed piles like spiral auger, under reaming tool, and boring guide.
  • This is a well proven and established technology for construction of foundation in expansive soils.
  • For speeding up the construction, bore and under ream for large diameter and deeper pile, a mechanical rig can be used.
  • The construction and design of such foundation can be done in accordance with Indian Standard Code of Practice IS 2911-Part III.

vi) Arch Foundation

  • In an arch foundation, the walls are supported on brick or stone masonry arches springing from a series of square cement concrete bases as in the sketch.
  • When to use arch foundation?
    – If condition of the soil is good.
    – Generally for low rise buildings.
  • Advantages
    – Saves materials like cement, coarse rubble stone, sand, etc.
    – Labour intensive system.
  • Disadvantages
    – Requires high degree of technical supervision.
  • Method
    – Square bases of designed dimensions and positions to be
    excavated and then 150 mm thick plain cement concrete (1:3:6) should be laid.
    – Soil between these pockets should be cut as per designed profile and 75 mm thick lean concrete (1:5:10) to be laid on it.
    – Coarse rubble stone masonry arch and wall should be constructed as a monolith.

3) Walls

  • Cob Wall Construction System
  • Wattle & Daub Construction System
  • Straw Bale Construction System
  • Rammed Earth Wall
  • Adobe Block Construct Technology
  • Compressed Stabilised Earth Blocks Technology
  • Rat-Trap Bond Brick Masonry
  • Ferrocement Wall Construction System
  • Interlocking Cement Stabilised Mud Block (ICSMB) Masonry
  • Stone Concrete Block Masonry
  • Combined Wire-cut and Country Brick Masonry

4) Roofs

  • Precast Reinforced Cement Concrete Channel Roofing
  • Precast Reinforced Cement Concrete Plank & Joist Roofing
  • Prefabricated Brick Panel Roofing
  • Precast Hollow Slabs Roofing
  • Precast Ferrocement Channel Roofing
  • Filler Slab Roofing
  • Jack Arch with Bricks and Precast RCC Joist Roofing
  • Stone on Precast RCC Joist Roofing
  • Micro Concrete Tiled Roofing
  • Corbelled Brick Pyramid Roofing

5) Opening Supports and Doors & Windows

  • Opening Supports
    Precast Reinforced Cement Concrete Lintel
  • Brick and Reinforced Cement Concrete Lintel
  • Brick Arch
  • Brick Corbel Arch

Doors & Windows

  • Frameless Doors and
  • Brick Jalis

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