Modern Earth Buildings

1st Edition

Materials, Engineering, Constructions and Applications

Editors: Matthew Hall R Lindsay M Krayenhoff
Print ISBN: 9780081016282
eBook ISBN: 9780857096166
Imprint: Woodhead Publishing
Published Date: 11th July 2012
Page Count: 800
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The construction of earth buildings has been taking place worldwide for centuries. With the improved energy efficiency, high level of structural integrity and aesthetically pleasing finishes achieved in modern earth construction, it is now one of the leading choices for sustainable, low-energy building. Modern earth buildings provides an essential exploration of the materials and techniques key to the design, development and construction of such buildings.

Beginning with an overview of modern earth building, part one provides an introduction to design and construction issues including insulation, occupant comfort and building codes. Part two goes on to investigate materials for earth buildings, before building technologies are explored in part three including construction techniques for earth buildings. Modern earth structural engineering is the focus of part four, including the creation of earth masonry structures, use of structural steel elements and design of natural disaster-resistant earth buildings. Finally, part five of Modern earth buildings explores the application of modern earth construction through international case studies.

With its distinguished editors and international team of expert contributors, Modern earth buildings is a key reference work for all low-impact building engineers, architects and designers, along with academics in this field.

Key Features

  • Provides an essential exploration of the materials and techniques key to the design, development and construction of modern earth buildings
  • Comprehensively discusses design and construction issues, materials for earth buildings, construction techniques and modern earth structural engineering, among other topics
  • Examines the application of modern earth construction through international case studies


Low-impact building engineers and building physicists; architects and low-energy building designers and design consultants; academics in engineering.

Table of Contents

Contributor contact details

Woodhead Publishing Series in Energy


Part I: Introduction to modern earth buildings

Chapter 1: Overview of modern earth building


1.1 Introduction

1.2 Definition of modern earth building

1.3 The significance of modern earth building in the current and future construction industries

1.4 Changes in the modern earth building industry

1.5 Managing the demands of the modern construction industry

Chapter 2: Hygrothermal behaviour and occupant comfort in modern earth buildings


2.1 Introduction

2.2 Hygrothermal loads and modelling

2.3 Thermal and hygric properties of earth materials

2.4 Hygrothermal behaviour and passive air conditioning

2.5 Indoor health and air quality

2.6 Sources of further information

2.8 Appendix: nomenclature

Chapter 3: Fabric insulation, thermal bridging and acoustics in modern earth buildings


3.1 Introduction

3.2 Approaches to fabric insulation

3.3 Thermal bridging theory

3.4 Thermal bridging simulation tools

3.5 Acoustic reverberation

3.6 Sources of further information

3.8 Appendix: nomenclature

Chapter 4: Modern earth building codes, standards and normative development


4.1 Introduction: a short history of building codes for using earth as a building material

4.2 Types of ‘standards’ for earth buildings

4.3 Normative documents for earth building

4.4 Selecting the parameters for earth building standards

4.5 New developments in earth building standards

4.6 Conclusions

Chapter 5: Passive house design: a benchmark for thermal mass fabric integration


5.1 Introduction

5.2 Description of Passive House

5.3 Functional principles of P


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About the Editor

Matthew Hall

Dr Matthew R. Hall is a Lecturer in civil engineering materials at the University of Nottingham, UK. He is an award winning researcher, noted for his work in the fields of thermo-physical properties and heat and mass transport in porous materials.

Affiliations and Expertise

University of Nottingham, UK

R Lindsay

Rick Lindsay is the Managing Director of Earth Structures Pty Ltd, Australia.

Affiliations and Expertise

Earth Structures Pty Ltd, Australia

M Krayenhoff

Meror Krayenhoff is the founder of SIREWALL Inc, Canada.

Affiliations and Expertise

SIREWALL Inc, Canada


Long overdue as a resource and instantly useable by knowledge professionals., Keith Robinson, Dialog Architecture