Construction and monitoring of experimental straw bale building in northeast China

Xunzhi Yin, Mike Lawrence, Daniel Maskell, Wen Shao Chang

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21 Citations (SciVal)
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Straw bale buildings have the potential reduce the environmental impact of construction. Although the technique has been introduced into northern China more than a decade ago, the construction method and potential problems within straw bale walls have not been fully understood in existing research. Following an analysis of existing straw bale construction both in north China and worldwide, this paper proposes modifications to the straw bale construction details currently used in north China. The modifications involve in-fill raw material, toe-up design and lime render application. These modifications were incorporated into an experimental building constructed in north China, and after having been monitored for 12 months, the modified construction details were critically assessed. The data demonstrate that rice straw bale walls are resistant to agents of decay and offer reduced construction time and cost than standard wall construction in north China. The construction method has the potential to become a mature construction system in the Chinese market in the future offering significant benefits both in construction and operational cost and in environmental impact.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)46-57
Number of pages12
JournalConstruction and Building Materials
Early online date7 Jul 2018
Publication statusPublished - 20 Sept 2018


  • Hygrothermal environment
  • Modifications
  • Monitoring data
  • Rice straw
  • Straw bale construction
  • Straw bale Wall
  • Straw durability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • General Materials Science


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