Published: 27th Apr 2018

Adding chemicals to soil could create an environmentally-friendly construction material to build homes in developing countries, scientists say. Researchers at the University of Bath are exploring the potential of geopolymer-stabilised soil, which is created when alkaline chemicals are added to soil. They believe it could be transformative in developing countries where houses are desperately needed. The UN estimates the world’s population will grow by an additional two billion people by 2050, with most growth from developing countries in Africa and Asia. They say hundreds of millions of additional homes will be needed in these regions over the coming decades. Geopolymers are strong materials, similar to cement, however, they don’t need to be heated to the same high temperatures to react. They can be fired at 80°C whereas cement and fired bricks usually require over 1000°C, making geopolymers potentially more energy-efficient to produce. The university says the task of housing a growing population … (To read the full article, subscribe below)