"gugler! build & print triple zero" - subproject 2: building with recycros

Building with recycros is working out basics in order to close the cycle of materials in the building sector as well as to increase the usage of recycled materials (recycros). The existing material cycles in the building sector are going to be analysed. Furthermore, there will be a catalogue presented, covering the actual situation of which materials are used in today´s engineering and how the waste is treated. The project will be completed with a summary of results and a proposal of concrete materials and constructional systems for the building project gugler.

Short Description

This project is a sub project of the flagship project "gugler! build & print triple zero"




Aim of the lead project "gugler! build &print triple zero" ("Gugler") is a new dimension of sustainability: plus energy standard for the building and material recirculation for the print process and the building. The challenge of the project is to combine separate findings such as passive house technology, renewable energy, building life cycle in an overall concept that is nevertheless economically and technically feasible.

Subprojects "SP2 Building with recycled materials" and "SP3 Design for Recycle" are dealing with recirculation of buildings and building materials. They shall provide planners with necessary basics for the planning of recyclable buildings. The results shall feed Subprojekt "SP5 eco-effective building" which will assess the building according to passive house standard, Total Quality Building (TQB) and ABC-Disposal. SP2 itself focuses on the use of recycled materials ("recycros").

The first step of SP2 was an overview of material flows in construction engineering in general and for important building materials in particular. As anticipated it came out that by far the highest amount to the overall material flow is contributed by the excavated material followed by mineral building materials. The re-input of recycled materials into the system is very low. Single exceptions are the metals: its content of recycled material is already more than 25 percent. But also the cycles of metals are in most cases open loops as recycling takes place outside building engineering.

Universal is the high difference between recycling rate and percentage of recycled materials from total input. E.g. the recycling rate for mineral building waste amounts to 70 % whereas the percentage of recycled materials from total input is less than 3 %. This is caused by the fact that still much more input is delivered into the system than material is extracted for renewed use out.

In a second work package the state of the art for the use of building materials made from "recycros" was taken under observation. Again the mineral building materials formed the overwhelming highest part of the building and with it also of the building related waste. Therefore the highest (weight related) contribution of recycled materials in the building can be gained by replacing mineral materials. In addition the excavation of natural virgin raw materials (gravel, sand) is reduced.

In the online database baubook an input mask for building materials with content of recycled materials was created. More than 1000 Austrian enterprises were contacted and asked to declare their products if they contain recycled materials. In spite of the efforts the return was less than expected. Only 25 products were declared and submitted by the enterprises. A particularly unexpected problem was that many enterprises do not consider the use of recycled material as an advantage in the marketing of their product but on the contrary as a barrier. Therefor additional research on products based on recycros and their attributes had to be carried out.

Concerning innovative, new possibilities for the use of "recycros" in construction engineering comprehensive research of international experiments were carried out. We located an overhang of product recycling and the use of recycling materials low budget applications. A recycling material exchange market hasn’t become widely accepted yet. The possibilities for new applications of recycros in construction in general and in the project "Gugler" were explored in a creative process. Recent research works deal with material recycling. Compared to the variety of available building materials, the volume of research work and actual possibilities stays modest.

The results of the previous work led to a catalogue of details. Each detail was assessed concerning its performance in building physics and its environmental impacts.

Finally all results were compiled and assessed and recommendations for the project "Gugler" formulated.

Project Partners

Project management

Mag.rer.nat, Hildegund Mötzl
Österr. Institut für Baubiologie und -ökologie GmbH

Arch. Ursula Schneider

Project partner

  • Gugler Gmbh
  • alchemia nova

Project collaborator

  • Dipl.-Ing. Margit Böck, Dipl.-Ing. Stephan Ladurner, Dipl.-Ing. Alexander Baumann, Dipl.-Ing. Stefan Breuer
    pos architekten
  • Dipl.-Ing. Steffen Brühl, Dipl.-Ing. Erna Motz, Markus Wurm, Dipl.-Ing. Thomas Zelger, Dr. Tobias Waltjen
    Österr. Institut für Baubiologie und -ökologie (IBO)
  • Dipl.-Ing. Heinz Gattringer
    alchemia nova

Contact Address

Ernst Gugler
gugler GmbH
Auf der Schön 2, A-3390 Melk
Tel.: +43 (2752) 50050 - 0
E-Mail: ernst@gugler.at
Web: www.gugler.at

Mag.rer.nat. Hildegund Mötzl
Österr. Institut für Baubiologie und -ökologie GmbH
Alserbachstr. 5/8, 1090 Wien
Web: www.ibo.at

Arch. Ursula Schneider
Maria Treu Gasse 3/15, 1080 Wien
Web: www.pos-architecture.com