Elements for façade cladding are large-volume products with a service life of several decades - their CO2 storage effect is correspondingly high if they are made of renewable raw materials such as wood. However, organically designed and freely formed facades can only be realized with wood at great expense. The Technical University of Chemnitz has now developed modern, 3D-shaped and backlit façade elements made of natural fibres, bio-resin and corrugated cardboard. The biobased proportion is currently around 35 percent and, according to the scientists, there is still room for improvement. In terms of fire and sound insulation, load-bearing capacity and thermal insulation, the "bio-facade" meets all applicable structural requirements for production buildings, and also scores with its low weight. The highlight, however, is the design: Under the double-curved, partially translucent cover layers, the researchers have installed LEDs in the individual corrugated cardboard compartments, which can be animated by software control.
The cover layers of the sandwich composite consist of flax and glass fibres embedded in a proportionally biobased epoxy resin. The core consists of corrugated cardboard compartments insulated with rock wool, which are protected against moisture and fire by a coating of sodium water glass - an innovative combination in the construction sector. As a bio-based recycling material that can be recycled again after use, corrugated board is also ecologically and economically interesting.
The biogenic portion could be significantly increased by the use of renewable insulating materials, but this requires the development of appropriate fire protection. But even in its current form, the bio-facade impressively demonstrates the possibilities of replacing conventional building materials with renewable ones in industrial construction: A prototype of the bio-facade was installed on about 48 square meters at the production hall of the project partner Richter & Hess in Chemnitz.
More information: https://www.fnr.de/