The present work, developed within the research project HPWalls (High Performance Wall Systems), aims to perform an experimental research on lightweight cementitious mortars containing recycled aggregates from the production process of the EPS (Expanded Polystyrene). The recycling of an industrial waste and its transforming in a new second raw material can be considered as an important strategy to reduce industrial waste flows and minimize the consumption of new resources and energy. Furthermore, the widespread use of plastics in the building field, in particular EPS, requires new approaches for the improvement of their environmental impact, in terms of productive process- with the optimization of the industrial process and the minimization of the sub-products- as well as in terms of life end strategies. That waste can represent an efficient tool for local enterprises and technical experts dealing with characterization and mix design applied to recycling materials. As a consequence, the project aims to assess the characteristics of that waste (light weight, low thermal conductivity, low density, high availability) in order to define a new competitive building material characterized by high technical performances and low impact manufacturing process. The mixtures, prepared starting from the percentages of raw materials defined according to the norms for standardized mortar, have taken into account the partial/total substitution of fine aggregate (sand) with recycled EPS with different grain size distributions. The specimens were analyzed starting from the workability of the raw blends and the mechanical strengths; the thermal properties (thermal conductivity, thermal diffusivity) were measured while hygric and acoustic properties measurements are currently under development.
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