What's the Latest?
Hundreds of earthbag/ CE buildings have been built in Nepal since 2015!

Current research shows how different contained earth is from sandbag wall research that engineers have used to design Nepal's CE buildings.

And it also shows us that a single length of vertical rebar is 50% stronger than two separate pieces hammered in the wall. Base-anchored rebar should be embedded in earthen wall fill for best strength. Careful detailing makes these walls not only survive quakes, but survive without breaking all the windows...


We've been saying for years that earthbag's flexible intrinsic barbed wire reinforcement has great potential. Now others are talking as well.

Let's help earthbag become all it can be, and save lives worldwide in the coming years!

Download the latest technical report

Estimated Contained Earth Shear Strengths May 2017-

                                                                             16 pages, 1.7 MB

                                                                             Full test description coming soon 



Cisterns for Haiti

BSI has been consulting with engineering students at Harding University about cistern designs for dry northern Haiti. Recent droughts and the everpresent cholera in the groundwater make saving rainwater important. BSI hopes to test some narrow wall solid contained earth (think 8" thick in strong mesh tubes) and/ or some double channel mixed sand/ earth fill for 5' high cistern walls.

Right: Straw wattle reinforced with rebar on a 1.2 m high earthbag base wall.

Come Learn while you Volunteer!

Starting spring 2016 there are intense needs for local Albuquerque and Santa Fe students and adults to help by building, testing, organizing volunteers, analysizing structures, photography, video, blogging...

Interns volunteer 2 weeks or more of labor and get in-depth training free. Other volunteers can work on-site for a few hours or from home.

Any help makes you a BSI hero!


Answers Needed for Nepal: Tilt tests, shake tests, cyclic-dynamic!

Now that Nepal's quake gave us positive results, it's time to see just how much earthbag can stand in vibration!
Dartmouth engineering student Awais Malik's testing showed that 2 narrow corner buttresses or one massive corner pier reduce  earthbag wall deflection under vibration by 25% and 33% respectively. More information is online in his thesis, Structural Analysis of Earth-Bag Systems.

A New Zealand engineer recommends we do a tilt test, and it should start this spring.
Even a modest shake table test of a stacks of solid mesh earthbags and modular contained earth in bags can tell us a lot!
 
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