Fernando Llanos Gónima (Conceptos Plásticos)
Interlocking block system made of recycled plastic and rubber.
Colombia, Mexico, Spain, Costa Rica, Argentina, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Ecuador, and Spain.
~4.60 USD (15.000.000 COP) converted on June 2019 for a 40 m² house
Residents of informal settlements, households, implementing organizations.
Bloqueplas is mass produced in Colombia by heating and melting PET pellets from recycled containers. The component is fabricated using thermoplastic extrusion where the material is extruded continuously through a die opening and retained in molds to obtain the final form of the block.
The construction method of the Bloqueplas system consist on laying and interlocking the blocks to form walls following a preset layout. The walls have reinforcement of columns and beams produced with same method. Complementary reinforcement include steel or aluminum profiles connected with conventional fasteners.
Conceptos Plasticos outlines that the blocks have been used to construct more than 59 houses
Size of the component
List of primary materials in the component
List of secondary materials in the component
Measurement, calculated in hours, of the component’s resistance to fire
R value associated with material/product
The compressive strength of the component, measured in megapascals
List of suitable climates for use of this components
The Bloqueplás construction system consists of structural and non-structural elements including blocks, columns, lintels, and beams. The components are made from all types of recycled plastics that are mainly comprised of polyethylene and polypropylene. The plastics are sorted and melted and then the mixture is extruded through a form. The block is compact and fused in one piece and forms the building system by joining with other elements such as beams and columns. The elements are designed to be friction fit so they can be easily assembled and do not require any mortar like is required for standard brick modules.
All the components can be replaced by purchasing new pieces from the manufacturer.
The manufacturer claims that plastics take over 500 years to biodegrade and therefore the homes could last for many generations.
A study performed by Universidad Santo Tomas in Bogota, Colombia, reported the system is a feasible alternative to contribute to increasing the recycling rate of waste plastic and decreasing the housing deficit in Colombia.
From the material perspective, the study cites the following features as advantages of the system: lightweight, modular, the wall made of blocks does not require plastering, beneficial thermal, acoustic, and earthquake proofing properties. Although the components strength is lower than conventional ceramic blocks, the resistance is acceptable for housing construction, according to the study.
The manufacturer works with the Foundation for Scientific Research and Technological Development (FICIDET) to test the product.
Builders should wear appropriate protective equipment such as hardhats, gloves and safety glasses while working to protect against physical injury commonly associated with heavy construction.
Electricity, sanitation, and water infrastructure are required.
Llanos, F., Bodensiek, T., 2017, Bloqueplas: Construction System with Blocks made from Recovered Plastic, 3rd International and 5th National Congress of Sustainable Construction and Eco-Efficient Solutions.
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