The CobBauge project’s main aim is to create an economical, insulating construction material with low environmental impact and to reduce the volume of waste landfilled by using the earth already in place for the construction of the buildings. The other main challenge of this project is to develop the market for cob both by responding to a demand from the users and by expanding the network of builders able to utilise cob in construction.

To meet these objectives, the CobBauge project will be led in 2 steps, firstly (CobBauge 1) with the schedule of several lines of work:

  • The development of new cob: materials and implementation processes
  • The creation and mobilization of a network of professional practitioners in construction and in cob
  • The communication on the objectives and main results of the project.

The planned work packages for the first phase of the project are:

WP M – Management

Leader: Plymouth University

Coordination tasks cover administrative, legal and financial activities. Day to day management is structured to ensure communication between partners, organisation of and follow up to meetings, coordination, monitoring and control of activities, supervising technical developments along with quality assurance, and effective implementation of financial procedures.

WP C – Communication

Leader: ESITC Caen

The partners will implement throughout the project a communication strategy to promote the project, its results and achievements and to demonstrate the efficiency and performance of cob as a contemporary and sustainable building material to builders and future builders (SOHO, SMEs, architects, engineers, academics, professionals, sectoral agencies), buyers and potential buyers, prescribers, scientific, press and the general public.

WP T1 – Cob mixes formulation and evaluation

Leader: ESITC Caen

Currently, the cob compressive strength is too low and its thermal conductivity doesn’t reflect the comfort felt by the users. According to RT2012, thermal conductivity of cob needs to be around 0.3W/m.K.  Four activities will be dedicated to this objective:

  • Supply and characterisation of soils and fibres
  • Test and selection of 4 most promising mixes with small scale thermal, moisture and structural measurements
  • Set up of an innovative building method
  • Medium scale tests of mixes to ascertain whether the properties at small scale are still valid, including the associated factors of cost and materials availability.

WP T2 – The specification of demand and mobilisation of a professional network

Leader: PnrMCB

The aim is to quantify demand for the product to ensure the new cob material meets the needs of the end users and generate interest in the product and future opportunities (training, construction, distribution). To this end, a network of potential stakeholders will be established. The network will be built on existing networks, developed by the partners for other European projects, and will be expanded with tailored communication and special events within government, the construction and insurance industries and the third sector. Using this network, the CobBauge project will apply quantitative & qualitative demand. The network will enable to share the challenges associated with traditional methods of cob construction and the expectations of potential users in terms of performance and technical improvements. The network will also provide a platform to explain, share and take advantage of improvements made by CobBauge and will form the basis of a continuity of CobBauge beyond the limits of the European project.

 

These actions during the first phase of the CobBauge project will then lead to the training of builders and craftsmen in the production of cob buildings as well as the construction of a large scale cob building (CobBauge 2).

 

CobBauge 2

WP M – Management

Leader: Plymouth University

Coordination tasks cover administrative, legal and financial activities. Day to day management is structured to ensure communication between partners, organisation of and follow up to meetings, coordination, monitoring and control of activities, supervising technical developments along with quality assurance, and effective implementation of financial procedures.

WP C – Communication

Leader: ESITC Caen

The partners will implement throughout the project a communication strategy to promote the project, its results and achievements and to demonstrate the efficiency and performance of cob as a contemporary and sustainable building material to builders and future builders (SOHO, SMEs, architects, engineers, academics, professionals, sectoral agencies), buyers and potential buyers, prescribers, scientific, press and the general public.

WP T1 – Design and build

Leader: Plymouth University

This work package is to prove the material both at full scale and in use. For this, 2 buildings on each side of the channel will be designed and build, taken into account:

  • Climat, occupancy patterns, size, weather conditions and regional house design;
  • Prove that optimised mixes from CobBauge1 are effective, economic and aesthetic pleasing.

WP T2 – Measure performance

Leader: Plymouth University

Two measure performance will be required:

  • Supply data to assess the performance of the building in use
  • Assess the construction process

The data from the measure performance  will be used to persuade buyers and builders that the 20% savings in energy are real and the homes are comfortable.

WP T3 – Training, network and demand

Leader: PnrMCB

In order to meet the existing  and new demand for communications activities and network expansion, PnrMCB and EBUKI will create training tools and will organize the first training sessions on the CobBauge process for construction professionnals. All this will feed into the potential for 1500 new CobBauge houses over 10 years.