AC and earthships..
Hi there Hajjar!
I am a graduate from the earthship academy and I live in Canada. I'm curious about the ways this material could be incorporated into the earthship design. There is a simple survival model that has a ferro-cement dome; could AC possibly be used in this application? how can the load bearing qualities stand up to being buried?
I love Earthships! And I'm not prepared to work that hard! Tires could be filled with AirCrete but it would provide insulation instead of thermal mass. An AirCrete dome can certainly be buried. It's very strong if properly designed and built. When the surface is reinforced with reinforcing fabric there isn't need for the typical use of steel rebar or ferro cement structure. Aircrete has good compression strength the reinforcing fabric provides the necessary tensile strength.
Wow, thanks for the quick reply! As tempting as it is to bypass the tirepounding, i'm pretty keen on the thermal mass (especially in the chilly canadian winter). I am pretty excited about this material for a number of other options around the ship though. Insulation around the berm/under roof panels, walkways, interior walls, gap fillers in the tire wall, maybe even incorporated into some funky bottle walls. Is Mike Reynolds aware of your work? I'm sure he'd be full of bright ideas for this stuff...
Those are all good uses for AirCrete. I have deep respect for Mike and his work. I've never had any contact with him and dont' know if he's aware of my work?
I also love earthships, I know that in the earth berm, there is suppose to be a thermal break a few feet past the tire wall. I think this would be a great place to put aircrete instead of the double layer of foam insulation. Also, there has been some debate as to weather to build the floor into the earth, or insulate it. The Brighton earthship has had many temperature issues http://thingsthatwindmeup.blogspot.com/2010/06/some-thoughts-on-earthships.html. If you feel your ground is warm enough to regulate the temperature in your home, then no insulation is needed. However, if you feel the earth does not meet your temperature need, then you could put a layer of aircrete under your floor and pour a regular concrete floor over it to use as thermal mass, or just use the AC itself as a floor and use only walls for thermal mass.