Project Eco+RCEB

Title: Eco+RCEB - PTDC/ECI-CON/0704/2021 – Eco-efficient recycled cement compressed earth blocks

Funding: 248.988 k€ (supported by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology - FCT)

Duration: March 2022 - March 2025

Research Team:

  • PhD members – José Alexandre Bogas (PI), Maria G. Gomes, Sofia Real (Co-PIS), Rafaela Cardoso, Vitor F. Sousa (CERIS/IST) ; Paulina Faria (CERIS/FCT-UNL); Manuel F. Pereira (CERENA/IST); Mafalda Guedes (CeFEMA, IPS), João Castro-Gomes (CMADE/UBI); António Tenza-Abril (TECMATER/ Universidad de Alicante)
  • Research fellows – 2 PhD students and 1 post-doc


The main objective of Eco+RCEB is the production and characterisation of new more eco-friendly compressed stabilised earth blocks (CSEB), by incorporating low-carbon recycled cements from waste concrete, recently developed by the project research team, as well as construction and demolition waste as earth replacement. The proposed CSEB, of closed circular economy, move towards new low embodied energy materials with reduced greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption and waste disposal, without significantly affect their technical performance. The project involves six main tasks: production of compressed earth blocks stabilised with recycled cement; characterization of the masonry earth and building of CSEB walls to be tested in natural environment; physical, mechanical and microstructural characterisation of CSEB; the thermal performance of CSEB; durability of CSEB; lyfe-cycle assessment of CSEB. Blocks are produced and characterized with different percentage incorporation of thermoactivated recycled cement from concrete waste or from reference cement paste waste. By the end of this project, a new more eco-efficient CSEB should be achieved, contributing for the resurging interest and confidence in using stabilised earth materials, towards a more eco-friendly and sustainable construction practice, and addressing a truly circular economy philosophy. This project is expected to contribute to the development of a new generation of low embodied energy building materials. The project is developed in partnership with Universidad de Alicante (UA, Spain), Universidade de Beira Interior (UBI) and a national earth block producer (“Oficinas do convento”, Montemor).

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