Thermal Performance of Panels with High Density, randomly oriented Straw Bales

Written by esba

This paper describes the hot-box testing (based on ASTM C1363-11) of seven straw bale wall panels to obtain their thermal conductivity values. All panels were constructed with stacked bales and cement-lime plaster skins on each side of the bales. Four panels were made with traditional, 2-string field bales of densities ranging from 89.5 kg/m³ – 131 kg/m³ and with the bales on-edge (fibres perpendicular to the heat flow). Three panels were made with manufactured high-density bales (291 kg/m³ – 372 kg/m³). The fibres of the manufactured bales were randomly oriented.

The key conclusion of this paper is that within the experimental error, there is no difference in the thermal conductivity value for panels using normal density bales and manufactured high density bales up to a density of 333 kg/m3.

Authors: Seitz, Sarah; Beaudry, Kyle; MacDougall, Colin


About the author


The European Straw Building Association is an independent European association, devoid of any profit making motive. The object of the Association is to promote and develop the use of straw, as a sustainable way of building in all the senses of the term “sustainable”: renewable, ecological, healthy, energy and climate efficient, social and economic.
The Association is a federation composed of organisations and people particularly concerned with the use of straw in buildings.