Building with EcoCocon Straw Panels

13. February 2020 EcoCocon Stories
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Building with EcoCocon Straw Panels

Building homes using straw bales has been around for many years. EcoCocon simplifies the bulk of the necessary steps thanks to the use of prefabricated panels. 

Building with Straw

Building homes using straw bales has been around for many years. The first homes were built around 1920 and many of them are still in use, proving that straw-based construction is a viable option.  

Straw-insulated homes have several benefits: straw is an excellent insulating material, the walls are vapour-permeable ensuring healthy air inside the house and the materials are naturally renewable.

For a long time, the only way to build with straw was to do it the DIY way. Many self-builders have created beautiful and functional homes. However, the building process requires a wide range of skills and even more time, making it feasible only for a small fraction of homeowners. 

We were able to simplify the bulk of the necessary steps thanks to the prefabrication of panels in our factory. The parts are precision manufactured in a controlled environment allowing simple and fast on-site assembly. A typical floor is completed in a matter of hours with no waste or wet processes, compared to the tedious and lengthy ways of traditional construction. 

Features of EcoCocon wall panels

  • Our panels are engineered as fully structural with a double wooden frame. They are able to support floors and roofs with no extra materials needed. 
  • The density of more than 100 kg per m3 is the guarantee of both thermal and energy efficiency and solidity.
  • EcoCocon panels are certified to withstand 120+ minutes of fire when rendered. 
  • The assembly of panes is extremely quick even for a self-builder without a crane on site. It is possible to completely build the shell of the house and seal it off within days, making the rest of construction independent of weather conditions.
  • Cold bridges are eliminated for a 100% mold- and draught-free environment.  

The Architecture of the Straw-insulated House

The possibilities when building with EcoCoon are limited only by your imagination. Our system allows for any layout, size or wall shape. The panels adapt to almost any design as they are made to measure down to 1-millimeter precision.

Many types of houses were built for our clients across Europe (and the first projects are being built in the United States). This is just a small preview of what's possible:

Check out the more detailed portfolio of our completed projects.  

The system can be used also for multi-story construction:

Even curved walls are easily achievable:

The choice of external finishes is wide - plastering, cladding, and a combination of materials are possible. Natural interior finishes complement the Ecococon system - wood-fiber for insulation, different woods and natural linoleum for floors and ceilings, clay plaster in all colors and structures complete the system. Tadelakt and clay techniques can be used to create beautiful and exclusive interiors:

Energy Efficiency of EcoCocon Houses

By building your house with EcoCocon panels you future-proof your project by achieving the passive house requirements. 

EcoCocon provides the best conditions for the Passivhaus standard, but there are other important factors that need to be considered. These include the orientation of the house, the quality of windows and roof insulation, etc. The energy performance of a passive house also needs to be confirmed by a PHPP calculation. 

Our system achieves the level of airtightness demanded by the passive house standard and yet keeps the walls completely vapour permeable (the walls allow vapour to escape to the outside). 

This effectively prevents condensation in the walls, which is a major problem in modern, sealed buildings. 

 The airtight, vapour-permeable system also creates a draught free and healthy indoor climate. Clay plaster, with its humidity regulation properties, can be applied directly to the straw panel surface. 

 When panels are combined with interior clay plaster applied directly on the straw and an exterior layer of 100 mm wood fiberboard, the system achieves a U-value of 0.119 W/m2K (or 0,123 with 60mm wood fiber board). 

The Cost of EcoCocon Houses

Every project is different, all our work is custom-made. Therefore we are unable to provide an exact figure without prior knowledge of your house design. 

If you would like to get a detailed idea about the cost of the EcoCocon wall system for your house, send us your drawings by filling in the estimate form. As a rule of thumb, our panels are comparable in terms of price with other passive and low energy construction methods.  

We will offer complete kit houses for customers who would prefer to buy a model home with an optimized design for a set price. Please write to us using the contact form below if you would like us to send you further info. 

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