These Lightweight Polystyrene Concrete Blocks Give Architects New Options for Construction

Polystyrene concrete blocks are lightweight, strong and offer impressive thermal properties. They are created from a combination of materials including waste products.
Jessica Miley

Polystyrene concrete is a relatively new building material that has broad applications and solves many problems of traditional concrete blocks. It is made from a combination of different materials to create a product that is durable, lightweight and offers lots of architectural design potential. Different manufacturers have different combinations of materials, polystyrene concrete is generally made from a mix of cement silica aggregate, recycled polystyrene granules and modifying agents such as setting accelerators. The end result is a product that offers both construction and insulation properties. The polystyrene bricks can be used solely as an insulation system for new or existing buildings, or it can be used as a construction material in a variety of ways. Because the bricks are lightweight they reduce the labor required for construction of masonry walls, and at the same time, increase the speed of construction.

The product uses two water products in its composition. First, it uses fly ash from thermal power stations. This by-product of the plants is captured by electrostatic precipitators. It contains high levels of silica which contributes to the polystyrene bricks thermal properties. The bricks also contain recycled polystyrene. Polystyrene bricks are just one alternative product to traditional clay or concrete bricks. Alternative bricks and masonry options are continually being explored by construction research and innovation companies to find solutions that offer fast and easy construction combined with materials that offer stability and excellent thermal properties.

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