Ex-scientist from NAL proposes light homes for Kodagu

Ex-scientist from NAL proposes light homes for Kodagu

A house constructed using composite material near Chikkapetehalli near Yelahanka in Bengaluru.

A former scientist from the National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL), Bengaluru, has come up with a proposal to construct light-weight, flood-resistant houses made of composite material in Kodagu district.

The material used in lightweight combat aircraft will be employed to build the houses, to replace brick and mortar as construction material.

Dr R Gopalan, the retired scientist from NAL, also the executive director and CEO of Society for Development of Composites, says structures constructed using brick and cement increases the load on the soil, which is not good for houses prone to natural disasters.

“Across the world, people are building houses using composite materials, which have high durability compared to traditional brick and cement. The weight of these houses is 1/100th of the traditional structures. Houses built using composite material can be constructed in just a few hours,” Gopalan said.

Referring to Home Minister G Parameshwara, who said pre-fabricated houses like Indira canteens will be promoted by the government, Gopalan said pre-cast cement slabs used in Indira canteens are very heavy and require use of cranes to construct homes. Knowing the soil condition of the flooded areas, it is advisable not to use heavy structures in Kodagu, the scientist said.

Light-weight material gives excellent thermal insulation unlike Indira canteens, which will be like a hot oven. 

Gopalan, along with other scientists, travelled across the ravaged areas of Kodagu to assess the situation. The team met the incharge secretary and the incharge minister for Kodagu in this regard. The team has constructed 65 taluk hospitals in North Karnataka in a span of five months and has built houses in flood-affected areas of the region.