IIT Madras is modifying an eco-friendly material to make homes
Gypsum is said to be a part of recent advancements made in the field of construction. However, several archeological surveys have proven that it has been used in ancient cultures like ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, ancient Rome, the Byzantine Empire, and the Nottingham alabasters of Medieval England.
Formed as an evaporite mineral and as a hydration product of anhydrite, gypsum is a crucial eco-friendly component used in the construction. Its industrial wastes are conventionally called ‘green materials’.
Taking this project one step forward, IIT Madras is making it more environment-friendly.
“Manufacture of GFRG (Glass Fibre Reinforced Gypsum) panels from the raw material gypsum, viz., natural gypsum, mineral gypsum, phospho-gypsum or chemical gypsum, with purity more than 90 per cent, entails less energy in comparison to energy-intensive conventional building materials like, brick, concrete, etc,” says Meher Prasad, a professor of Structural Engineering Division under the Department of Civil Engineering, IIT Madras.