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Undergraduate Research Project Management System

A Practical Thin Shell Concrete Roof Design for Rural and Impoverished Communities

Status Current
Seeking Researchers No
Start Date 01/01/2012
End Date 05/15/2012
Funding Source UAA Undergraduate Research Grant
Funding Amount 2,000
Community Partner
Related Course
Last Updated 01/09/2012 03:28PM
Keywords concrete, shell, latex-cement, shelter


  Scott Hamel

Student Researchers
  Tom Gill


A barrel shell roof consists of thin arched sections made of concrete that are capable of spanning long distances. This design efficiently minimizes the materials used while maintaining strength and stiffness. The lightweight sections can be easily constructed on the ground and lifted into place. This roof design is ideal for impoverished countries such as Haiti where cement is expensive and wood construction is cost prohibitive. The concrete roof also offers excellent
protection from severe weather and earthquakes because of its structural integrity and relatively light weight.

This research will focus on the design of a small, modular, latex cement barrel shell roof section with the goal of determining (1) an optimal concrete mix design, and (2) the minimum thickness necessary for typical roof loads. The results of this research should be very useful for organizations and individuals who are looking for simple, cost-effective ways to increase the available long-term housing in their communities.

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