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Watch out wood, make way for AAC!!

| Sunday October 14th, 2007 | 3 Comments

aircrete.jpgA unique product called Autoclaved Aerated Concrete or better remembered as AAC is coming to the Wild West. A fan of this intriguing product described AAC as concrete that thinks its wood. It differs from standard concrete mainly by the millions of tiny air cells which give AAC it’s amazing insulating properties. Although the advantages over wood seem to be many this funky building material is rarely used and few developers have even heard of it. Availability and education are to blame, but that will all change rather quickly as the word spreads and as the industry brings the superior product to the masses. The West’s first plant will be opening in Kingston, AZ in 2009.
Some highlighted features follow:
Energy-Efficient- low in embodied and operational energy, thermal advantages
Fire Resistant- can withstand direct flames up to 1900 degrees F
Sound Absorbent- thanks to a pore content of approximately 80%
Weather Resistant- wind tough, water and moisture resistant
Long-Lasting- durable as concrete
Environmentally Sound- recyclable, non-toxic, high raw material-product ratio
Pest Resistant- say goodbye to termites
Easy to Use- workable as wood, comes in pre-cut panels or in blocks
Versatile- easy to work with and can be cut and shaped with hand tools
Lightweight- a dry density of 550kg/m3, weighing in at one-fifth normal concrete


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Categorized: Green Building|

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  • Jeff

    Thanks for posting this. Are you saying that it won’t be available in the west until sometime in 2009?

  • Lexington

    Actually AAC is available now but it is difficult to implement right now for two reasons primarily.
    ONE: familiarity with how to use and build with the product. From design to installation few professionals know how to work with AAC.
    TWO: Sourcing the material. The closest source for AAC in the west is in Mexico. It costs more per sq/ft for shipping than it does for the actual product making it fairly expensive and logistically difficult.
    That being said, AAC is still being used with more frequency in California and Arizona slowly gaining acceptance and finding its place in the market. A company in Salt Lake City called GreenSmart is able to get it now at a fair price and is planning on opening a store in 2009 in tune with the opening of the plant in Arizona. Some developers in Utah like it so much they plan to use it for their entire project with the assistance of GreenSmart. So it is coming, it just takes the motivated and driven to make it happen now and still make it profitable.

  • Peter

    Great post! My father’s been building with hebel since 95 and it really is great stuff. Why it hasn’t replaced concrete I don’t understand.