HySSIL Research & Development
CSIRO and the Research and Development Program
CSIRO is Australia’s leading industrial research and development organisation. The Materials Science and Engineering (CMSE) division of the CSIRO has an established record of accomplishment in the development of high performance and environmentally sustainable materials, products and manufacturing processes for the building and construction industry.
The HySSIL research and development projects have brought together a diverse team of scientists, engineers and technologists with expertise in areas covering materials science, concrete technology, structural engineering, chemistry and manufacturing.
Current Research & Development Projects
HySSIL and CSIRO are currently working on the following research and development projects:.
Cementitious Cellular Precast Panel Technology
The current cementitious panel product range is being developed in the density range of 1,200 kg/m 3 to 1,500 kg/m 3 (50 to 40 percent lighter than comparable concrete panels). Testing and development of the 1,500 kg/m 3 product is complete and Building Code of Australia endorsement for several applications has now been achieved. Considerable testing and development work has been carried out by CSIRO and HySSIL on a product with a density of 1,200 kg/m 3 and a final testing program is about to commence.
Geopolymer Cellular Precast Panel Technology
This research and development project with CSIRO is well advanced and the results to date confirm that the cellular Geopolymer panel product has many advantages over the cementitious HySSIL panel product including:
- Approximately 15% greater compressive and flexural strength at densities between 1000 kg/m 3 and 1500 kg/m 3 ,
- Faster curing times which could allow greater re-use of formwork and lower production costs,
- Higher fire and chemical resistance,
- Approximately 60% lower embodied energy.
Geopolymer Lightweight Roof Tile
HySSIL, CSIRO and a major US concrete roof tile manufacturer and have been working together since February 2009 to develop a lightweight Geopolymer roof tile for the North American housing market.
The potential for this product is not only in the existing lightweight roof tile market but also, at the weights proposed, as a replacement for lighter malthoid and timber shingle roofing systems all without the need to strengthen the roof structure. This is a major market in fire prone areas such as California.
The key advantages of Geopolymer roof tiles compared to Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) roof tiles are:
- Lighter and stronger,
- Better resistance to the elements,
- 60% less greenhouse gas (CO 2 ) emission from component materials.
Geopolymer Conventional Weight Roof Tiles
The major US concrete roof tile manufacturer and HySSIL have agreed to commence working together to develop a conventional weight Geopolymer roof tile for the North American housing market in conjunction with HySSIL’s research and development partner, CSIRO.
While these tiles are likely to be lighter than cement based roof tiles due to the higher strength of the Geopolymer matrix, the main economic benefit will come from the sales premium that can be extracted on the basis of the significantly greener materials used in their manufacture.
Future Research & Development Projects
HySSIL is planning to invest significantly in further research and development over the coming years. Some of the early-identified projects which will benefit from a lightweight alternative are listed:
- Flooring systems, for domestic and commercial applications;
- High performance acoustic barriers and partitions;
- Road barriers; permanent and moveable;
- Architectural panels and components;
- Large format building blocks; and
- Blast and or earthquake resistant panels