New biocomposites for innovative construction facades and interior partitions
Osirys is a European Research Project where a holistic solution for façades and interior partitions ready to be applied in building retrofitting and new construction has been developed. The project uses biocomposites as the base material to define different products: a multilayer façade, a curtain wall, a window, and an interior partition. The biocomposites developed have different functionalities able to meet the strictest requisites of the European Building Codes in relation to fire and structural performance, improve indoor air quality through the elimination of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and microorganisms, increase thermal insulation, and increase the durability of construction elements. The new systems are lighter than traditional ones, leading to reductions in overall weight, thereby reducing implementation costs during both manufacturing and assembly processes, thanks to an industrialised concept that utilises modular elements. The project was developed with the collaboration of 18 European partners (5 research centres, 9 SMEs, 2 large industries, and 2 public bodies). The main activities were devoted to the establishment of requirements, the development of materials, the design of products, the integration of materials into products, the verification of properties by simulation and testing according to EU standards, the integration of products into real buildings, and economic and environmental assessment. The scope of this paper is to provide a general overview of the entire project work and results to demonstrate the feasibility of using biocomposites in envelope solutions with the aim of solving some of the main problems that exist in façade traditional solutions. The project finishes with the implementation of the developments in real buildings as prototypes; further research is required before industrial scale manufacturing of the systems can be launched into the market.