Sustainable materials

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    Could anyone advice some durable architectural materials most suitable for a very aggressive environment (atmospheric particle emissions, nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide, fallout; organic substances – benzene, toluene and formaldehyde; inorganic substances – ammonia and hydrogen chloride).

    Do you know any books or examples of the projects on industrial sites?

    Thank you!



    Jason T. Radice

    Refractory brick, or “fire brick”, is one of if not the the most resistant materials for building. It is what they use to line kilns and industrial smokestacks which are durable under constant exposure to the chemicals you list.


    You might be able to use other materials which have a ceramic coating.


    Thank you!


    While I have always believed that “sustainable design” is a positive movement throughout the World……designers need to “understand’ that the COSTS of going green are approx. 17% higher than conventional construction methods.  Developers/clients can be EXTREMELY concerned about COSTS for their projects…especially here in the U.S.A. were the economy is extremely fragile…and not getting much better.

    The U.S. government tried and failed with GREEN ENERGY projects here in the U.S. at the cost of Millions of dollars to the Tax Payers.

    I just think this “concept” still has a long, long way to go.


    Yes, but it is up to us, landscape architects, to try to try to convince the clients… and the whole world…

    Here in Europe it is possible to find many grants for the sustainable technologies from the European Union. I think when there is a vision, there must be a way to do it. While searching for possible solutions I found something that looks interesting:

    Mitch Howard


    Sounds like a very “dynamic” site. I believe Jason’s response is a great start. Finding locally sourced used (recycled) firebrick may be a good choice. Of course any recycled material potentially comes with it’s own set of contaminants. Actual sustainability is very difficult to implement… but we must believe it’s possible.   

    Many source links to pertinent info…

    A large community of like-minded and helpful people on an ad-heavy and visually inelegant website…

    A pdf from University of Michigan with great info on “sustainable building materials” manufacture and application. It also includes a short bibliography of useful sources…




    Yes…….I know you are RIGHT about this. 

    But, just try convincing a client that he needs to help contribute to protecting the EARTH……that he needs to spend almost $700,000.00 more on than the $10 million he originally was planning to spend.

    I’m betting 98% of developers world wide are more concerned about their “bottom line”.

    Mitch Howard

    Center for Creative Land Recycling also has a lot of useful info and case studies…

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