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Dover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-11-10 05:55 PM
Original message
Gimme Shelter - Binishells


Housing remains the most challenging issue facing architects, builders and politicians today. The adaptation of the Binishells system illustrated above, provides strong, permanent shelter in the fastest, least expensive, most ecological manner available on the market. These shelters are strong and able to resist hurricanes, flooding, earthquakes and fires. They are easily deployable anywhere as they can be fabricated from locally available materials and require no factories for prefabrication and no heavy machinery for installation.

The Binishells may be the most innovative new system for construction since the introduction of prefabrication in the late 1800s. This patented technology in based on the radical notion of replacing formwork and heavy machinery with air. The system, developed by Dr. Dante Bini in the 60s uses low air pressure to lift and shape wet concrete and reinforcing steel. More than 1,600 buildings have been built using this system in 23 countries. The system has been recently improved, rendered more environmental and architecturally flexible. Today Binishells use 80% less materials, have 95% of the embodied CO2 and have a carbon footprint 80% smaller than traditional construction. The basic technology is described above. Please roll over each section to see pictures of a small square based Binishells being inflated.



http://www.binishells.com/index.html
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John Q. Citizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-11-10 06:00 PM
Response to Original message
1. This is not my beautiful home this is not my beautiful wife
Into the blue again
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silverweb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-11-10 06:05 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. One of my favorite songs...
:)
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silverweb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-11-10 06:10 PM
Response to Original message
3. Love it!
I have often fantasized about living in various types of green, alternative housing.

Concrete Canvas is a kind of a military/disaster-use, downscale version of the Binishell. Very interesting!

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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-12-10 04:08 PM
Response to Original message
4. Great ideas, and the naturally rounded shapes should be far more hurricane safe.
It would be great to live in a more environmentally benign house. Our current building methods cannot be continued. We have to rethink everything we do and housing is one of the areas with so much waste it should be a no-brainer to start reducing the waste and inefficiency in building our homes and in the homes themselves! Bravo!

There is also too much labor and far too much carbon locked up in the way we build today! Here is one solution:

Robot builder could 'print' houses

14:52 10 March 2004 by Max Glaskin
A robot for "printing" houses is to be trialled by the construction industry. It takes instructions directly from an architect's computerised drawings and then squirts successive layers of concrete on top of one other to build up vertical walls and domed roofs.

The precision automaton could revolutionise building sites. It can work round the clock, in darkness and without tea breaks. It needs only power and a constant feed of semi-liquid construction material.

The key to the technology is a computer-guided nozzle that deposits a line of wet concrete, like toothpaste being squeezed onto a table. Two trowels attached to the nozzle then move to shape the deposit. The robot repeats its journey many times to raise the height and builds hollow walls before returning to fill them.

Engineer Behrokh Khoshnevis, at the University of Southern California, has been perfecting his "contour crafter" for more than a year. "The goal is to be able to completely construct a one-story, 2000-square foot home on site, in one day and without using human hands," he says.

http://dailytrojan.com/2010/09/23/usc-professor-develop... /


http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn4764-robot-builde...

Videos (cool)
http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=3fhryxVAsa4&vq=med... - this one shows that structures can be made in any shape, whether square, round, whatever
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=idTj5JXgoLs&feature=rela...
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silverweb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-12-10 05:04 PM
Response to Reply #4
6. Incredible!
Thanks for posting this!

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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-12-10 05:37 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. I think it's great that so many people are comng up with ideas
Some of them are better suited to a population of 10 Billion people than others but we definitely need all the great ideas we can get!

The thing that most intrigued me about the "Contour Crafting" robotic builder: it builds a house in a day and does not endanger any humans in the process. With the internal weave structure 1) has the strength of metal reinforcements and should be able to withstand high winds (possibly hurricanes but I haven't seen any testing), and 2) the cavities create air pockets that can be filled with foam insulation after all the necessary cables are run (electrical, phone, video, computer).

I feel like such a complainer but I wish the company would make a video of the robot constructing a building that has a more natural shape than the big rectangle shown in the video I linked but that's probably more a function of the guy doing the AutoCad animation than anything else since the contour crafting robot can build curves and arches, etc. The buildings in the OP would be a natural...
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silverweb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-13-10 02:08 AM
Response to Reply #7
10. I agree completely.
There are so many amazing ideas around, but our progress seems to be so slow in implementing them. The robot builder is wonderful and I hope it gets a lot of use.

The price of keeping a barely adequate roof over one's head in the U.S. is outrageous, when shelter is one of the most basic requirements for human life. Something really needs to be done to make decent, eco-friendly, nontoxic housing more affordable for everyone.

We really need to completely rethink and redesign our communities, but I know it'll be decades in coming (if we even have that much time left).

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silverweb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-12-10 05:02 PM
Response to Original message
5. Perfect for building a hobbit house.
I would so love one!





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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-12-10 06:11 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. A Hobbit house = Earth Sheltered dwelling?

http://cu.motherearthnews.com/photos/index.php?id=14688...

Here are a bunch of images to ponder:
http://www.google.com/images?hl=en&rlz=1G1GGLQ_ENUS267&...

Earth sheltering is the architectural practice of using earth against building walls for external thermal mass, to reduce heat loss, and to easily maintain a steady indoor air temperature. Earth sheltering is popular in modern times among advocates of passive solar and sustainable architecture, but has been around for nearly as long as humans have been constructing their own shelter.
...

Types of construction
  • Earth berming: Earth is piled up against exterior walls and packed, sloping down away from the house. The roof may, or may not be, fully earth covered, and windows/openings may occur on one or more sides of the shelter. Due to the building being above ground, fewer moisture problems are associated with earth berming in comparison to underground/fully recessed construction.
  • In-hill construction: The house is set into a slope or hillside. The most practical application is using a hill facing towards the equator (south in the Northern Hemisphere and north in the Southern Hemisphere). There is only one exposed wall in this type of earth sheltering, the wall facing out of the hill, all other walls are embedded within the earth/hill.
  • Underground/fully recessed construction: The ground is excavated, and the house is set in below grade. It can also be referred to as an Atrium style due to the common atrium/courtyard constructed in the middle of the shelter to provide adequate light and ventilation.

http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Earth_shelterin...
Note: this site has a ton of info on Earth Sheltered dwellings, how to build them, water proofing, site preparation, etc. Well worth a read.
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silverweb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-13-10 01:59 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. Only in part.
I'm not sure there's a proper definition of what makes a hobbit house, but to me it has rounded curves rather than squared angles, and it's smallish/more cozy than a bigger house would be.

Your illustration is lovely, but much too large and too traditional for my taste. My hobbit house would also be a bit wilder looking, minus mowed lawns and garage.

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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-13-10 06:44 AM
Response to Reply #9
11. Small is beautiful
Edited on Mon Dec-13-10 07:04 AM by txlibdem
There are a few examples of rounded curves in the first link in my previous post. I think they achieve that with shotcrete (the same stuff/technique they use in swimming pools). And the link I extensively quoted from has some really great info about how to avoid water infiltration such as concrete admixtures (stuff added to the concrete while its mixed), spray on, rubberized, etc., as well as french drains around the exterior situated lower than the foundation of your home and sloped to take the water far enough away from the house.

You are intuitively right: rounded shapes are more psychologically pleasing --but they are the most structurally sound as well. And for a home with tons of dirt on top of it you really want to have it be pretty darn structurally sound.



Above ground you can achieve these rounded shapes with COB:


Whenever I see subdivisions with row after row of the standard wood frame houses jammed right next to one another I think, "how in the heck did we get to the point where this is normal?!?"
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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-13-10 07:18 AM
Response to Reply #11
12. Some people have really gotten artistic with building with COB

Beautiful, IMO.

Check out this link for some more pics.
http://www.binscorner.com/pages/1/10-amazing-houses-mad...

I'm wondering if COB can be used to trick out the interior of the underground home like these pictures show in the above-ground COB house.
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silverweb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-13-10 01:28 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. Fascinating links, gorgeous pix!
I can't review all now, have Monday-type stuff to do, but you can be sure I'll be back to go over it all more thoroughly later.

FWIW, I am familiar with cob building, as well. SO many ways we could be solving housing problems!

ttyl... :hi:


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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-13-10 05:05 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. My talents may not be up to the level of those artists but
The beauty of working with cob is that you can wet it down and redo or add on something else. So you can start with a masterpiece or create it over time by adding a little flair here, a little something there...

I finally convinced my wife that we are going to build our next home ourselves. I haven't told her it'll be an earth sheltered home (with southern wall the only exposed area)... Plenty of time for that, we're stuck where we are for a number of years yet. I'm pretty certain I'll be able to use water-stop shotcrete for the walls and roof and cob for the interior. I'll have to do a bit more research on that, maybe a small scale test next year or so...
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silverweb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-14-10 12:28 AM
Response to Reply #14
15. Fascinating information, thanks.
The cob houses are so adorable. In the one set of pictures, it looked like even the kitchen sink and counters were cob.

Absolutely beautiful -- and cozy and hobbit-like! :D

Have you and your wife started drawing plans for your new house? That will be such a great shared project.

On another note, the site link you posted, Bin's Corner, has totally messed up my work schedule this evening. I started looking at it beyond the pix of cob houses while on my dinner break, and suddenly realized I'd lost a whole hour(!) in just those "few minutes" I spent wandering through it. Yikes!

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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-14-10 08:40 AM
Response to Reply #15
16. That's the hallmark of a great site, no?
I'm glad you found more there of interest. One wonders what we did before the webs...

On the sink and counters, you're right. I've seen videos on youtube... hell let me find it:

1. Bob Villa (one of my heroes) quotes a DOE report that only half the heat from a traditional heating system gets into the living space. Here's a video of him saying that (warning, he's hawking some product there, I didn't watch the rest of the video)
http://www.youtube.com/user/edenpureoutlets?feature=pyv...

2. What to do about that? Cob to the rescue! The video starts with an explanation of Rocket Stoves until 1:50 when you see what I mean:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=235m0EzZF4U
At about the 2:30 mark they show the really interesting part, cob as thermal mass to collect the heat from the stove exhaust pipe before it exits the building. Just watch the vid, it's far more interesting than I make it sound.

Anyway, the point is that cob can be formed to make everything you need inside your home: shelving units, tables, chairs and benches, partition walls, etc. If you had the time and energy to put into it, you could make an entire home out of nothing but cob, never have to buy any furniture. Well illustrated in this video, starting at 1:10
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Frkps9jmCVM&feature=rela...
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silverweb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-14-10 02:08 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. Indeed it is.
I forwarded Bin's Corner to everyone on my list with a warning to "view only when there are no other pressing obligations." I don't remember what we did before the "interwebs," either -- or microwaves, for that matter.

OMG, using cob to make furniture... what a fantastic idea! I'm making a private garden out of my tiny city driveway (corner lot), still working on escape-proof walls for my cats, but cob garden furniture is on the project list now! Might take me another half year to get to it, but get to it I will, and it will be SO much better than bought furniture!

Going to watch the vids now. Thanks! :hi:

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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-15-10 06:59 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. Better and with infinite possibilities for the shape, texture, etc.
I don't know if you noticed but some of the pictures and videos I've posted on this thread show cob structures with embedded colored glass, colored bottles, and tile. Try that with something from ikea!

Thanks for passing along the Bin's Corner site. I am in no way connected to that site or its owners but I find that rewarding those who put out positive things brings me a little joy at the very least!
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