The Influence of the Type of Lime on the Hygric Behaviour and Bio-Receptivity of Hemp Lime Composites Used for Rendering Applications in Sustainable New Construction and Repair Works
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Public Library of Science (PLOS)
Arizzi, A.; et al. The Influence of the Type of Lime on the Hygric Behaviour and Bio-Receptivity of Hemp Lime Composites Used for Rendering Applications in Sustainable New Construction and Repair Works. Plos One, 10(5): e0125520 (2015). [http://hdl.handle.net/10481/36750]
SponsorshipThe research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n° 326983 (NaturALiMe), and the Spanish project MAT-2012-34473 of the Ministerio de Ciencia y Competitividad. Author MB, owner of the CANNABRIC company, had some role in the design and preparation of mortar samples and in the preparation of this manuscript, but did not have any additional role in data collection and analysis.
The benefits of using sustainable building materials are linked not only to the adoption of manufacturing processes that entail reduced pollution, CO2 emissions and energy consumption, but also to the onset of improved performance in the building. In particular, hemp-lime composite shows low shrinkage and high thermal and acoustic insulating properties. However, this material also shows a great ability to absorb water, an aspect that can turn out to be negative for the long-term durability of the building. For this reason, the hygric properties of hemp-based composites need to be studied to ensure the correct use of this material in construction and repair works. The water absorption, drying and transpirability of hemp composites made with aerial (in the form of dry powder and putty) and hydraulic limes were investigated here and related to the microbial growth induced by the water movements within the material. Results show that hemp-natural hydraulic lime mixes exhibit the highest transpirability and drying rate, the lowest water absorption by immersion and capillary uptake and the least intense microbial attack and chromatic change. A microscopical study of the hemp shives also related their great ability to absorb water to the near-irreversible swelling of their structure under dry-wet conditions.