Combined in situ and in silico validation of a material model for hempcrete

A new publication has been published by researchers from the Institute of numerical modeling, Mihails Birjukovs and Andris Jakovičs, in cooperation with scientists Maris Sinka and Diana Bajare. The article “Combined in situ and in silico validation of a material model for hempcrete” was published on February 28, 2022, in the Construction and Building Materials journal (Q1).

Hempcrete is known as an environmentally friendly building material with a good specific thermal resistance. Experiments were conducted to determine the hygrothermal performance of this material and to ascertain compliance with modern standards.

Temperature and relative humidity were monitored over 8 months for the hempcrete wall and the hempcrete manufacturing process was documented in detail. The hygrothermal performance of the wall formed from this material was modeled using numerical simulations.

It was observed experimentally that hempcrete serves as a good insulation material in Latvian climate and similar conditions. Importantly, high-density hempcrete also proved resilient to mould growth even at high relative humidity.

Physical and mechanical tests of the material, as well as numerical modeling results, indicated that hempcrete could be a good alternative to traditional construction materials in the future, significantly reducing climate impact and improving energy efficiency.