In-situ thermal measurements showed that the GFRG demo building was around 2oC cooler compared to an adjacent conventional building during the harsh summer. Further, tests have shown that GFRG panels absorb very less water. The water absorption of the panels is found to be less than 2 per cent even after 24 hours of immersion in water; the panels are therefore water-resistant. But as GFRG buildings system are prefabricated systems, all the construction joints (including the vertical and horizontal wall panel joints) should be treated with waterproofing compounds.
Advantages over conventional buildings
The GFRG building system has a number of advantages over conventional buildings:
While benefiting the mass-housing segment, GFRG also serves as sustainable technology. It is environment-friendly, as it utilises industrial waste, and the construction minimises the usage of scarce and energy-intensive materials such as cement, sand, steel and water. There are no safety and health issues associated with the product. Gypsum is an inert material and GFRG building construction entails far less embodied energy (from the manufacture till the completion of construction) compared to conventional construction using brick, reinforced concrete or precast concrete. Hence, GFRG has been confirmed as a green material by the United Nations Framework on Climate Change (UNFCC).
- SERAPHINA D’SOUZA