It is thanks to the 2003 grant from the Australian Embassy Direct
Aid Programme that construction of a small mudbrick structure within
the Kerkenes Expedition House complex was undertaken in the autumn
of that year as the first snow fell on the village (Fig. 12).
Timber posts and beams were incorporated within the mudbrick walls
to provide stability against earthquake loads. The mudroof (Fig. 13),
supported by a timber structure, has to be regularly rolled to ensure
that it does not leak. A disadvantage of traditional mud walls and
roofs is the need for regular maintenance but improvements can be
made by the introduction of modern materials and techniques. Bitumen
paper lined the roof while a Bituline waterproofing membrane, donated
by Onduline, was applied to those parts of the walls that were constructed
below ground level. Old car tyres were used as permanent formwork
for pouring the concrete pillar on which the balcony posts and beams
rest. Disused telephone poles, donated by Telekom, were sliced into
blocks (Fig. 14) and set into the floor with a mixture of mud and
lime (Fig. 15). The building was completed in November 2003 but the
last coat of paint had to wait for the spring 2004.
New technologies can improve the performance of traditional materials
and techniques, thereby combining the advantages of both. The project
dynamically develops its research design so as to combine theoretical
analysis with experimental studies in the field.
Promoting Sustainability and the Development of Rural Settlements
The small structure, called the Eco-Building, houses the Sahmuratli
Village Association and will provide a meeting point for villagers
to discuss and develop activities related to the welfare of the village.
The Kerkenes Project has set up one of its computers, which awaits
a modem for connection to the Internet. Future programmes will include
workshops for both men and women, and educational activities for children.
If the development of organic gardening attains a high level of success,
it is envisaged that the Village Association would act as an outlet
for the sale of the garden produce. It is also anticipated that the
Association will eventually be able to provide facilities for guests
and visitors attracted to the area by its rich cultural heritage,
and in particular by the archaeological research undertaken at Kerkenes.
Consisting of a single room and a balcony, the new building (Fig.
16) with its traditional mudbrick walls and mud roof is an ideal structure
for the ongoing study of indigenous building materials and traditional
construction techniques because it is simple to configure for simulation
studies. Once its physical properties have been recorded and a virtual
3D model created (Fig.17), the building material configuration and
other parameters can be changed so that simulations (Fig. 18) can
be produced and compared. Tinytag dataloggers are used to record temperature
and relative humidity both outside and inside the building. This data
is then used to check, and adjust if necessary, the virtual model.
Extensive environmental studies on actual and theoretical data can
thus be performed.
Temperature and humidity are recorded with dataloggers located inside
and outside the building. When several dataloggers are available,
simultaneous collection of data can be recorded for two or more types
of buildings. In this way excellent data sets can be recorded thus
permitting comparative studies of the environmental performance of
traditional building materials with those of industrially produced
Other structures have been planned and will be built as soon as resources
become available. One material that the team is eager to test is the
autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC) block. AKG Gazbeton, which has already
supported the research programme, has promised to provide the material
needed for the construction of an AAC structure roofed with aerated
Preliminary Results from Analysis
Environmental studies on the mudbrick building, conducted by Tugrul
Karagagüzel, not only provided valuable insights into its thermal
performance (Fig. 19), but made it possible to compare the results
from the computer model with the actual performance. This was done
by matching the simulated dynamic thermal performance of the building
with the real data. The building was neither occupied nor heated during
this period. Actual temperature and relative humidity measurements
collected by the Tinytag dataloggers for a one-month period were plotted
together with the computer simulations made for the same period (Fig.
20). Graphs displaying both the real and calculated data can be used
to judge the accuracy of the simulations and if discrepancies occur
the given parameters can be checked and adjusted.
If the weather data (Fig. 21) for the given region is available simulations
can be done for different times of the year. The model can be tested
with the climatic data of other regions and the effect of building
materials and climatic factors on thermal comfort inside a given building
can be assessed.
It is possible to calculate the amount of energy required for space
heating and cooling in order to maintain the ideal conditions for
thermal comfort (Fig. 22). The environmental performance of traditional
building materials (mudbrick, stone, timber frames, mud roofs) against
those of contemporary ones (kiln fired bricks and tiles, cement blocks,
and insulation materials) can be evaluated. Other parametric studies
(Fig. 23) relating to building form and orientation or to window size,
type and orientation can also be performed.
The graphs illustrated below represent a selection of results. It
is hoped that the number of simulations performed can be enlarged
for a better understanding of the environmental performance of all
available building materials. The right choice of material for an
efficient conservation of energy will bring long-term savings in fuel
bills and help decrease the amount of carbon dioxide produced by our