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close this bookCompressed Earth Blocks - Volume II. Manual of design and construction (GTZ, 1995, 148 p.)
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View the documentAcknowledgment
View the documentPreface
Open this folder and view contentsIntroduction
Open this folder and view contentsMasonry principles
Open this folder and view contentsThe project's building dispositions
Open this folder and view contentsArchitecture
View the documentBibliografy


GATE - stands for German Appropriate Technology Exchange. It is a division of Deutsche Gesellschaft fhnische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH, an organization owned by the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany which commissions the GTZ to plan and implement Technical Cooperation activities with countries of the Third World.

GATE was established in 1978 on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation (BMZ) - which is responsible for development cooperation with Third World countries - and in consultation with the German Federal Ministry for Research and Technology (BMFT).

GATE currently works in the fields of dissemination of appropriate technologies, environmental protection and conservation of natural resources. Within the GTZ, GATE is responsible for these activities on a cross-sectoral basis. GATE, with the "Information Service on Appropriate Technology (ISAT)" works in the following areas:

1) Dissemination of appropriate technologies

Dissemination and application of appropriate technologies, especially in connection with self-help activities

- Cooperation with non-governmental appropriate technology groups: cooperation with NGO's in Africa, Asia, Oceania and Latin America.

- Information service: documentation (appropriate technologies), exchange of information, question and answer service, publication of technical brochures, articles and a technical journal.

- Fund for small-scale appropriate technology projects.

2) Environmental protection and conservation of natural resources

- Coordination of environmental protection activities at the GTZ.

- Further development of methods and instruments for environmental impact assessment.

- Technical backstopping and coordination of interdisciplinary and multisectoral projects in the fields of environmental protection and conservation of natural resources.

- Cooperation with the relevant national and international organizations, associations and offices concerned with this sector.

German Appropriate Technology Exchange - GATE in: Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH Posffach 5180 / D-65726 Eschborn / Germany / Phone: (06196) 79-0 / Telex: 407 501 0 gtz d / Fax (06196) 79 48 20

CRATerre-EAG - The International Centre for Earth Construction - School of Architecture of Grenoble. The members of CRATerreEAG are high-level professionals from various countries. Since 1973, CRATerre-EAG has been involved full time in all aspects of earthen architecture from the preservation of historic monuments to the setting up of modern production lines. CRATerre-EAG's five inter-related fields of activity are:

1) Research: as an officially recognized research team, CRATerre-EAG carries out several research programs at fundamental and practical levels in various fields such as ethnology, economy, mineralogy, soil mechanics, technology, etc.

2) Consultancy: CRATerre-EAG's missions in this field cover the project formulation, feasibility and investment studies, setting up of programs, building design, raw material prospection, planning and evaluation.

3) Application: CRATerre-EAG members are currently engaged in field operations from architectural design to site supervision of social or educational building on behalf of governmental or non-governmental organizations.

4) Training: in collaboration with the School of Architecture of Grenoble (EAG) and Grenoble University (USTMG), CRATerre-EAG runs post-graduate courses for architects and building engineers. CRATerre-EAG also organizes vocational training courses and thematic intensive training sessions in collaboration with organizations such as the International Union of Testing and Research Laboratories for Materials and Structures (RILEM), International Council for Building Research Studies and Documentation (ClB), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM) and others.

5) Dissemination: through the publication of scientific and technical books and manuals, an active participation in international meetings and a "question-and-answer" service, CRATerre-EAG contributes greatly to the promotion of earthen architecture and the dissemination of technical information.

Maison Levrat / Parc Fallavier / BP 53 / F - 38092 Villefontaine Cedex / France / Telex: 308 658 F / Fax: (33) 74 95 64 21

Scientific supervision: Patrice Doat, teaching architect; Hubert Guillaud, research architect; Hugo Houben, research engineer

Authors: Hubert Guillaud, research architekt; Pascal Odul, engineer architect; Thierry Joffroy, architect

Additional assistance: Vincent Rigassi, architect; Alexandra Douline, senior technician; Philippe Gamier, architect

Illustrations: Oscar Salazar, architect; Patrick Idelman, draughtsman

Documentation: Marie-France Ruault

Format: Rne Rivi

English Translation: Claire Norton

Publishing coordination: Titane Galer

CRATerre-EAG: Dario Angulo, Patrice Doat, Sstien d'Ornano, Alexandre Douline, Hubert Guillaud, Hugo Houben
Thierry Joffroy, Serge Ma, Pascal Odul, Vincent Rigassi and additional assistance from: Sylvain Arnoux, Patrick Bolle,
Anne-Sophie Clemencon, Christian Lignon, Christophe Magn Philippe Romagnolo, Olivier Scherrer

Drawings: CRATerre-EAG

Cover photograph (Fig. 1): Rented house, Mayotte. Built by SIM.

Die Deutsche Bibliothek- CIP-Einheitsaufnahme

Compressed earth blocks: A publication of Deutsches Zentrum fur Entwicklungstechnologien - GATE, a division of the Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH in coordination with the Building Advisory Service and Information Network - BASIN / (Engl. transl.: Claire Norton). - Braunschweig: Vieweg. NE: Norton, Claire (Ubers.); Deutsches Zentrum fwicklungstechnologien <Eschborn>

Vol. 2. Manual of design and construction / Hubert Guillaud... (111.: Oscar Salazar; Patrick Idelman). - 1995
ISBN 3-528-02080-6
NE: Guillaud, Hubert

With the help of Architectural Research staff of the Department of Architecture and Urbanism (Direction de l'Architecture et de l'Urbanisme - DAU) du Minist de l'Equipement, du Logement et des Transports

All rights reserved
© Deutsche Gesellschaft fhnische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH, Eschborn 1995
Published by Friedr. Vieweg & Sohn Verlagsgesellschaft mbH, Braunschweig

Vieweg is a subsidiary company of the Bertelsmann Professional Information.

Printed in Germany by Hoehl-Druck, Bad Hersfeld

ISBN 3-528-02080-6

This book is the fruit of patient and methodical team-work carried out in the course of fifteen years of scientific and technical research, within the CRATerre research laboratory of the School of Architecture of Grenoble, on compressed earth block technology and its architectural applications, closely linked to experimentation and to site-work, as well as to university teaching and professional training. Designed with the intention of widely disseminating theoretical knowledge as well as practical skills, a large part of the book is devoted to practical examples of construction techniques and architectural design, which are the central themes. It is important to provide a wider public of land-use decision-makers, architects and engineers, entrepreneurs and builders, with the information and tools needed to ensure a high quality of architectural application, which alone can ensure the social, cultural and political acceptance of this technology.

With its attractive layout and the answers it provides to all the practical questions that site practitioners might ask, this book seeks to impart confidence in a construction technology, which is still historically young and not sufficiently known. It emphasizes the link between building material, structure, form, and architectural detailing. But it also addresses the importance of the technology with regard to economic and social benefits for the local population, as are confirmed by some of the project examples presented in it.

"A building material is interesting not for what it is, but for what it can do for society." John Tumer's aphorism remains remarkably relevant today, and, in many situations, the compressed earth block has already proved its ability to play a significant role in providing affordable and decent shelter for all levels of society. The reader of this will be a committed practitioner with a better understanding of the technology of compressed earth blocks and ready to play a useful role in society.