The building materials are normally a composite

The fast development in construction industry
across the globe has paved the way to the development of green building
materials for sustainable development. The green building materials are
normally a composite of natural fibers blended with conventional lime stone or
Portland cement for developing materials for built environment.  In this paper, lingio-cellouseagro waste,
rice straw, has been used to develop wall paneling and false ceiling material
with Magnesium oxide as a binder. The materials used in built environment are
one of the major reasons for sick building syndrome which is mainly due to the
damping of building materials and subsequently the microbial growth.  In this work, FALSE CEILING BOARD MADE UP OF
rice straw mixed with mgo WAS INVESTIGATED FOR WATER ABSORPTION AND SWELLING
PROPERTIES FOR VARIOUS WEIGHT RATIO OF mGo AND STARW FIBER LENGTH AND THICKNESS
OF THE BOARD.In addition, the effect of water absorption on microbial growth on
various false ceiling boards were also investigated. It is observed that the
water absorption properties of the proposed board are comparable with other
natural fiber boards bonded with minerals. The results also suggest that the
length of the straw dictates the water absorption and swelling properties as
compared to other variables. The fungal growth was also observed in the
proposed board after five days whereas commercially available boards did not
allow the fungus to grow.

In the last few decades, the enormous growth of
polymer matrix composite(PMC) has been witnessed due to their superior
mechanical properties over homogenous materials1. This has significantly affected
the environment due to non-degradable nature2. Since these synthetic resins and
fibers are carcinogenic, it also created lot of health related issues to the
workers 3. These issues are addressed to an
extent by using natural fibers and organic adhesives as binders 4. Due to the high  manufacturing cost of polymer based
composites, they are not used as an alternate building material5. The building materials are produced
by reinforcing natural fibers with inorganic binder materials such as gypsum,
clay, Portland cement, Calcium silicate (CaSiO2) and MgO6. It is believed that the natural fiber
reinforced composite (NFRC) with inorganic material as binder offers required thermo-physical
and acoustic properties as prescribed by various standards 7,8 . Since the natural
lignocellulosic fibers extracted from the straw, skin, leaf, seed and fruit are
highly porous in nature, they are preferred in many applications 9.The rice straw is an agricultural
waste which are commonly burnt across India and subsequently causing sever air
pollution to the north part of India during winter 10. It is reported that the average
air quality index during November and December months in the Country’s capital
New Delhi is around 481 due to the burning of farm fields. Therefore, it is
essential to provide an alternate solution to the farmers to convert the agro
wastes into value added product for the sustainable development of the villages11.

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A good built environment is expected to have
good thermal comfort, acoustic environment and sufficient lighting whilst
consuming less energy and they are achieved by using appropriate interior
materials12.The commonly used interior
materials are fiber reinforced mineral boards such as wood wool boards and
cement boards of which wood wool boards are widely used due to their superior
physical, thermal and acoustic properties 13. A plethora of literature is
available on the usage of agro wastes as building materials 3 .For instance, Han-Seung Yang
investigated the effect of fiber length on mechanical and water absorption
properties of  particle board made up of  rice straw with  Urea-formaldehyde or Polymeric diphenylmethane
as binders 14,15 .Similarly, Magda Emil and team
studied the tensile, acoustic and water absorption properties of rice straw reinforced
with recycled polystyrene foam wastes16. Although some natural fibers
such as sisal, hemp coconut fiber and durian are mixed with inorganic materials
such as lime stone, Magnesium oxide and cement17, their availability is scarce and
consumes significant time in extracting the fibers with heavy usage of
chemicals1,5 . To our knowledge, the rice straw
is not used for developing interior materials for built environment17 . Although the straw of rice and
wheat are used as cattle feed, mushroom cultivation and in packaging
industries, large quantity of straw are still burnt which is causing severe
environmental problems 18 . 
The increasing demand of wood wool based products not only result in
deforestation but also making the boards are expensive 17 . Therefore, usage of alternate
materials using such fibrous materials are necessary for providing better
thermal insulation and acoustic environment. 

 

 

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