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Serving Sri Lanka

This web log is a news and views blog. The primary aim is to provide an avenue for the expression and collection of ideas on sustainable, fair, and just, grassroot level development. Some of the topics that the blog will specifically address are: poverty reduction, rural development, educational issues, social empowerment, post-Tsunami relief and reconstruction, livelihood development, environmental conservation and bio-diversity. 

Thursday, February 22, 2007

ICC turns paddy straw into strong panels

Daily Mirror: 22/02/2007"

International Construction Consortium (ICC) the Standard Bearer in the construction industry in Sri Lanka, has come off with an intriguing panel range out of paddy straw under the brand DURRA. An innovative technology initiated in Australia from the raw materials Paddy & Wheat Straw by Ortech Industries (Pvt) Ltd., the panels are widely in use in Australia, New Zealand, USA, Philippines and Indonesia. In Sri Lanka at present only panels for partitions, internal walls, fire doors and easy kits for houses are produced, whilst elsewhere external walls too are available.

ICC is introducing the same process in Sri Lanka but from the harnessing available resource of our own paddy fields, which otherwise are mainly consumed by fire as refuse. However history shows that paddy straw has been used by our farmers of yore in brick making for construction of houses. This fact is difficult to assimilate by the modernized world which depends on artificiality in most spheres. In DURRA the core is processed leveraging the intrinsic strength and durability of the straw that withstands extreme heat and pressure.

In the process non toxic bonding glue is also generated and thereby synthetic chemical glue is avoided. This is another environment conservation aspect of this wonder product. From the inception of the manufacture to the finished panels environmental conservation is considered as top priority. Whilst the standard dimensions are 8’ x 4’ , 50/ 58mm and a weight of 19Kg/ m2, they can be custom made. Also the texture could be of smooth paint, textured, fabric, wall paper or granular. They are movable too. A 100% ‘Green Product’, DURRA panels are recyclable as the composition is totally natural. Compared to many conventional boards or panels, DURRA is cost effective, economizing on time, labour and safety measures.

Apart from numerous uses for Houses, Offices, Factories, Schools and Supermarkets, the DURRA panels owing to their higher sound absorption characteristics and are highly acoustic. These sound proofing panels are widely applied in the construction of Filming, T.V., and Music Studios, Auditoriums, Gymnasiums & Work stations. Corporations can get this benefit for high profile conferences that need extreme privacy. Moreover its unique and distinctive features such as Fire/ Impact/ Thermal Resistance, makes DURRA a viable solution for architects and the customer alike in building. One notable feature is that these panels do not need any metal framing unlike in many other varieties as they are strong enough to be ‘self supportive’.
Novel additions to the Durra Product Family are the Fire Doors and easy kits manufactured ideally to be used in outdoor site offices and labour camps. The prominent characteristics of the Durra Fire Door are that it is tested by the Industrial Technology Institute (ITI) with proven 2 hr rating, could be customized, no health hazardous materials are used (glass wool), smoke prevention due to the intumescant strip. Available with/without accessories, Thickness 60mm and finally the sash consist of a hard wood frame of 50mm Durra fire barrier material laminated on either side with 5mm plywood.

It is envisaged by ICC that DURRA will occupy in the minds of the construction industry both the lay and the professional, as the most durable, eco-friendly and cost effective solution that will yield a much higher return on investment. The Company has in its pipeline more innovative products with similar qualities and effectiveness.

The Durra Fire Door is available at a totally revolutionary price and high performance compared to many competitive products available in the local market.


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