Development of Light Weight Bricks for Energy Efficient Buildings Using Rice Husk

  • Bishnu Pada Bose Rajendra Mishra School of Engineering Entrepreneurship, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India
  • Diptasri Ghosh Indian Institute of Technology, Hyderabad, India
Keywords: Waste material, Rice husk, Light weight brick, Green building, Carbon footprint


Rice husk is a waste material and finds use as a fuel. It seems to hold a lot of promise to meet many desired qualities of bricks though its use in the raw form. In this study, produced lightweight bricks using rice husk in raw form, mixing it with fly ash and cement. Prepared samples of a varying percentage of rice husk, cement, and fly ash and measured their compressive strength and porosity besides testing other usual mechanical properties. We fitted the resulting data in a model that may work as a benchmark of compressive strengths for bricks of different percentages of husk and cement. The weights of the bricks are reduced with an increasing percentage of rice husks and are lower than standard fly ash bricks by up to 45% with 12% husk content, whereas the porosity is on the higher side. In the separate batch of experiments added sand along with the above ingredients to observe slightly improved compressive strengths of the bricks. The cost of the rice husk reinforced brick is estimated to be less than standard fly ash or fired clay bricks. The higher porosity and silica-rich husk reduce the heat conductivity of the bricks. Their uses in building construction, particularly high rises, and green buildings, are expected to be beneficial. The process does not involve incineration at any stage and, therefore, has a low carbon footprint.

Author Biography

Diptasri Ghosh, Indian Institute of Technology, Hyderabad, India

Diptasri Ghosh
PhD Scholar
Microelectronics & VLSI Design
Advanced Embedded Systems and IC Design Laboratory
Dept. of Electrical Engineering
Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad
Contact: +917439031474


Anjum, F., Naz, M. Y., Ghaffar, A., Kamran, K., Shukrullah, S., Ullah, S., 2022. Sustainable insulating porous building materials for energy-saving perspective: Stones to environmentally friendly bricks. Construction and Building Materials 318, 125930.

Araichimani, P., Prabu, K. M., Kumar, G. S., Karunakaran, G., Surendhiran, S., Shkir, M., AlFaify, S., 2022. Rice husk-derived mesoporous silica nanostructure for supercapacitors application: a possible approach for recycling bio-waste into a value-added product. Silicon 14 (15), 10129-10135.

Bazargan A.J., Tan, C., Hui, W., McKay, G., 2014. Utilization of rice husk for the production of oil sorbent materials. Cellulose 21 (3), 1679-1688.

Beagle, E.C., 1978. Rice Husk Conversion to Energy. Food Agricultural Service Bulletin. Food Agricultural Organization of the United Nation. Rome, Italy.

Bhattacharya K.R., Ali, S.Z., 2015. An Introduction to Rice-grain Technology, Woodhead Publishing India Pvt. Ltd. New Delhi.

Boriesa C., Borredona, M.E., Vedrenne, E., Vilarem, G., 2014. Development of eco-friendly porous fired clay bricks using pore-forming agents: A review, Journal of Environmental Management 143, 186-196.

Bose, B.P., Dhar, M., Ghosh, D., 2022. Stockholm Conference to Kyoto Protocol – A Review of Climate Change Mitigation Initiatives. International Journal of Earth Sciences Knowledge and Applications 4 (2), 338-350.

Bose, B.P., Dhar, M., 2022. Dredged Sediments are One of the Valuable Resources: A Review. International Journal of Earth Sciences Knowledge and Applications 4 (2), 324-331.

Bose, B.P. , Shaıkh J., Roy, N., Dehurı, A.N., Dhar, M., Bose, D., Ghosh, D., 2021. Quantifying Sustainability and Energy Benefit by Recycling of Ground Granulated Blast-Furnace Slag (GGBS) on Replacement of Natural Fertile Topsoil Using for Fired Clay Brick Making Process – An Experimental Study. International Journal of Earth Sciences Knowledge and Applications 3 (3), 244-251.

Bose, B.P., 2022. State-of-the-art on Recycling of Construction and Demolition Waste in a Circular Economy: An Approach Towards Sustainable Development. International Journal of Earth Sciences Knowledge and Applications 4 (3), 516-523.

Bose, B.P., 2023. Valorization of Iron Ore Tailing (IOT) Waste Through the Circular Economy Concept: A Sustainable Solution Towards Mitigation of Resource Crisis and Climate Change. International Journal of Earth Sciences Knowledge and Applications 5 (2), 309-316.

Bose, B.P., Dehuri, A.N., Bose, D.B., Ghosh, D., 2022. Plastic Waste Recycling: Experiences, Challenges and Possibilities in a Circular Economy-A State-of-the-Art Review. International Journal of Earth Sciences Knowledge and Applications 4 (3), 524-534.

Bose, B.P., Dhar, M., Ghosh, D., 2022. Bio-Waste to Bioenergy: A Perspective From India. International Journal of Applied and Advanced Scientific Research 7 (1), 51-60.

Bose, B.P., Shaikh, J., Roy, N., Dehuri, A., 2020. Behavior of Jointed Rock Mass on Strength under uniaxial loading condition: A Sustainable approach. International Journal of Geology, Earth & Environmental Sciences 10 (3), 23-30.

Chiang, K-Y., Choua, P-H., Huaa, C-R., Chiena, K-L., Cheeseman, C., 2009. Lightweight bricks manufactured from water treatment sludge and rice hulls. Journal of Hazardous Materials 171 (1-3), 76-82.

de Sensale, G.R., 2006. Strength development of concrete with rice-husk ash. Cement and Concrete Composites, 28 (2), 158-160.

Farid, S.A., Zaheer, M.M., 2023. Production of new generation and sustainable concrete using Rice Husk Ash (RHA): A review. Materials Today: Proceedings (In Press).

Foo, K.Y., Hameed, B.H., 2009. Utilization of rice husk ash as novel adsorbent: a judicious recycling of the colloidal agricultural waste. Advances in Colloid and Interface Science 152 (1-2), 39-47.

Görhan, G., Şimşek, O., 2013. Porous clay bricks manufactured with rice husks. Construction and Building Materials 40, 390-396.

Houston D.F., 1972. Rice Chemistry and Technology, St. Paul, MN, American Association of Cereal Chemists, 301-340.

Hwang, C.L., Huynh, T.P., 2015. Investigation into the use of unground rice husk ash to produceecofriendly construction bricks. Construction and Building Materials 93, 335-341.

Kumar, S., 2002. A perspective study on fly ash–lime–gypsum bricks and hollow blocks for low-cost housing development. Construction and Building Materials 16, 519-525.

Lawanwadeekul, S., Srisuwan, A., Phonphuak, N., Chindaprasirt, P., 2023. Enhancement of porosity and strength of clay brick fired at reduced temperature with the aid of corn cob and waste glass. Construction and Building Materials 369, 130547.

Madurwar, V.M., Ralegaonkar, R.V., Mandavgane, S.A., 2013. Application of agro-waste for manufactured from water treatment sludge and rice hulls. Journal of Hazardous Materials 171 (1-3), 76-82.

Madurwar V.M., Ralegaonkar, R.V., Mandavgane, S.A., 2013. Application of agro-waste for sustainable construction materials: A review, Construction and Building Materials 38, 872-878.

Mishra, P., Chakraverty, A., Banerjee, H.D., 1986. Studies on physical and thermal properties of rice husk related to its industrial application. Journal of Materials Science 21 (6), 2129-2132.

Parracha, J.L., Santos, A.R., Lazera, R., Flores-Colen, I., Gomes, M.G., Rodrigues, A.M., 2023. Performance of lightweight thermal insulating mortars applied on brick substrate specimens and prototype wall. Construction and Building Materials 364, 129954.

Pimraksa, K., Chindaprasirt, P., 2009. Lightweight bricks made of diatomaceous earth, lime and gypsum. Ceramics International 35 (1), 471-478.

Rajamani, S., Kolla, S.S.N., Gudivada, R., Raghunath, R., Ramesh, K., Jadhav, S.A., 2023. Valorization of Rice Husk to Value-Added Chemicals and Functional Materials. International Journal of Environmental Research 17 (1), 22.

Rauth S.P., Sedmake, R., Dhunde, S., Ralegaonkar, R.V., Mandavgane, S.A., 2012. Reuse of recycle paper mill waste in energy absorbing light weight bricks, Construction and Building Materials 27 (1), 247-251.

Senthilkumar, V., Suren, R., Premraj, C.I., 2023. Manufacturing of fly ash bricks using waste sugarcane bagasse and rice husk ash. In AIP Conference Proceedings (Vol. 2782, No. 1), AIP Publishing.

Stefani, P.M., Garcia, D., Lopez, J., Jimenez, A., 2005. Thermogravimetric analysis of composites obtained from sintering of rice husk-scrap tire mixtures. Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry 81 (2), 315-320.

Tarek, D., El-Naggar, M., Sameh, H., Yousef, A., Ragab, A., 2023. Energy Efficiency Coupled with Lightweight Bricks: Towards Sustainable Building: A review. SVU-International Journal of Engineering Sciences and Applications 4 (1), 1-28.

Turgut, P., Yesilata, B., 2008. Physico-mechanical and thermal performances of newly developed rubber-added bricks. Journal of Energy and Buildings 40 (5), 679-688.

Yarbrough, D., Wilkes, K., Olivier, P., Graves, R., Vohra, A., 2005. Apparent Thermal Conductivity Data and Related Information for Rice Hulls and Crushed Pecan Shells. Thermal Conductivity 27, 222-230.

Zerbino, R., Giaccio, G., Isaia, G.C., 2011. Concrete incorporating rice-husk ash without processing. Construction and Building Materials 25 (1), 371-378.

Zhang, L., 2013. Production of bricks from waste materials–A review. Construction and Building Materials 47, 643-655.