Spreading the concrete mix
CO-CO. ArtFill Project. Bryan, Texas.
Concrete Panels with coconut fiber reinforcement.
Team: Gabriel Esquivel, Dr. John Nichols, Jorge Cruz, Steven Hewett, Jeff Lemley.
There is currently a great deal of interest in developing the technology for using natural fiber materials in cement composites. Natural fibers exist in reasonably large quantities all over the world and natural vegetable fibers are produced in most developing countries. Natural fibers have been used to reinforce inorganic materials for thousands of years. This project examines the effect of twined coconut fibers as reinforcement to 10’ x 10’ concrete panels. For treatment, 25% twined coconut fibers will be added as reinforcement. The panel is a porous ornamented panel, which is more a study of small façades. This panel size has never been done, thus the importance of this project.
Flexural tests have been carried out on prototype panels to determine their strength with different volume fractions and aspect ratios of fibers. The casting will be done on site to avoid transportation. Each panels weighs about 2,000 lbs.