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A research on straw bale and traditional external wall systems: Energy and cost-efficiency analysis [ITU J Faculty Arch]
ITU J Faculty Arch. 2020; 17(1): 95-103 | DOI: 10.5505/itujfa.2019.65882  

A research on straw bale and traditional external wall systems: Energy and cost-efficiency analysis

Begüm Diker1, Fatih Yazıcıoğlu2
1Department of Architecture, Faculty of Fine Arts and Design, Dogus University, Istanbul, Turkey
2Department of Architecture, Faculty of Architecture, Istanbul Technical University, Istanbul, Turkey

Rapid population growth and increased energy consumption along with urbanization led to many problems such as climate change and global warming. Sustainable building design and construction has become an essential concept. New construction technologies and the use of sustainable materials are quite significant in terms of energy efficiency in order to improve building envelope.
In the first step of the study, three of the most preferred external wall systems in low-rise buildings in Turkey construction industry have been selected and examined in detail. In the following step, timber-framed (infill) and load-bearing straw bale wall systems that have an ancient history and known as a traditional construction system have been selected in order to make a comparative analysis. In the evaluation part, five different wall systems are compared to each other in terms of their physical and thermal properties (density, weight, U and R values), embodied carbon/energy amounts and costs. The results are summarized in tables and figures. Straw bale construction is preferred in most continents like Europe, Asia, America because of its easy applicability, sustainability, good thermal insulation value, locality, economically applicable. However, these kinds of applications are very limited in Turkey due to the lack of knowledge about construction techniques. Besides, there has been no regulation or standards in Turkey about straw bale construction yet. With this research, it is aimed to emphasize the importance of straw bale construction in terms of energy efficiency and to discuss the applicability of straw bale buildings for Turkey.

Keywords: Energy efficiency, Low-impact building materials, Straw-bale construction, Sustainable construction techniques, Turkey


Begüm Diker, Fatih Yazıcıoğlu. A research on straw bale and traditional external wall systems: Energy and cost-efficiency analysis. ITU J Faculty Arch. 2020; 17(1): 95-103

Corresponding Author: Begüm Diker, Türkiye


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