autoclaved aerated concrete

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Steve Bluestone’s Building Science Lab

A New York devotee of autoclaved aerated concrete plans a demonstration project to test the material against Passive House modeling

Posted on Apr 19 2016 by Scott Gibson

Steve Bluestone, the New York real estate developer with a special interest in a building material that most builders ignore, is about to embark on a self-financed experiment that will test the effectiveness of high-mass walls in a cold climate.

Bluestone last year built a house in Hillsdale, New York, with autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC). The blocks, produced by a single manufacturer in the U.S., are lighter than conventional concrete blocks and better thermal insulators. A few high-performance builders use them, but most do not. Bluenose thought they deserved a try.

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Image Credits:

  1. Steven Bluestone

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All About Thermal Mass

Interior thermal mass can sometimes help lower energy costs — but in cold climates, it’s won’t help much

Posted on May 3 2013 by Martin Holladay

UPDATED on December 4, 2013 with a citation of recent research findings.

What’s the deal with thermal mass? Since manufacturers of materials that incorporate concrete often exaggerate the benefits of thermal mass, it’s easy to get cynical and conclude that the buzz around thermal mass is all hype. But in many climates, it’s actually useful to have a lot of thermal mass inside your house. Just keep in mind that thermal mass may not be as beneficial as its boosters pretend.

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Image Credits:

  1. Martin Holladay

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Does Autoclaved Aerated Concrete Make Sense?

An Atlanta couple decides between AAC block and conventional wood framing for their new house

Posted on Apr 22 2013 by Scott Gibson

As Steven Knapp and his wife plan a new house in Atlanta, indoor air quality (not energy efficiency) is at the top of their priority list. At least that's how a recent discussion on autoclaved aerated concrete began.

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Image Credits:

  1. Kathleen Jardine and James Cameron
  2. Martin Holladay

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