Infiltration of wind-driven rainfall into plastered straw bale walls

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Chase, Matthew
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The performance of plastered straw bale walls with respect to wind-driven rainfall was investigated in this thesis. The absorption coefficient, which describes the rate of water infiltration, was measured for 14 plaster types, twelve different earth plasters and cement and lime plasters. The absorption coefficient was measured during uptake of water from a free reservoir. The effective porosity of these plasters, which describes the moisture storage capacity and the degree of protection that a plaster offers to straw bales, was also determined by submersion in water. An analytical model employing the absorption coefficient, the effective porosity, and climatic data was used to predict and compare plaster performance and to demonstrate the usefulness of this type of data. Simulated wind-driven rainfall experiments were also conducted on two plaster types. The results indicate that the static test used to measure the absorption coefficient can reasonably be used to predict actual wind-driven rainfall infiltration.
straw bale wall, plaster, wind-driven rainfall, infiltration, absorption coefficient