Cow Dung Ash As An Alternative Material To Uneconomical & Eco-Unfriendly Concrete

As the population increased significantly, building and infrastructure construction also increased simultaneously. Consequently, the consumption of concrete grows up sharply because it is an irreplaceable part of the construction material. Due to these reasons, the price of concrete would increase more, and the CO2 emissions which caused during cement production will lead to the greenhouse effect. To mitigate these shortcomings, new technology has been researched which uses cow dung ash as a replacement for the cement to reduce costs and pollution. It also provides a scientific method to deal with cow dung ash effectively.

Growing demand

The construction industry is commonly well-known as the backbone of the infrastructure development of the country, where the buildings are under construction and use of the concrete is in full swing. In line with the growing demand for construction in developing countries, for example, in Africa, an increase in consumption of concrete is inevitable while these countries are sensitive to prices. The demand for properties and infrastructure would probably keep increasing in the future. Therefore, it is urgent to take some action to reduce the cost of concrete for affordable new construction techniques.

Energy consumption

The concrete industry is also an energy consuming and water consuming industry. During the production of concrete, there would be a huge amount of demand for energy and water. Generally, it is eco-unfriendly to consume a lot of energy as producing energy in a clean way is not common these days. Besides this, how to dispose the waste of water, would be another issue.


The chemical conversion process of limestone (CaCO3) material in the cement industry has a massive impact in releasing Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions during the production of cement. The cement industry is contributing to 5% world anthropogenic CO2 emissions, while the ratio of CO2 emissions from clinker production amount to about 0. 5 kg/kg of limestone. CO2 emissions that fossil fuels are releasing in our clean air during the process of cement production should also be taken into account as additional air pollution. The increasing use of concrete in the construction industry will produce significant CO2 pollution in the air. In the equation below it is shown that how Calcium carbonate (CaCO3) decomposes and produces Calcium oxide (CaO) and Carbon dioxide (CO2).

Low Quality of Construction

Quality of the construction is usually positioned at high risk when the extreme modification occurred in progress. The price of concrete and the quality of cons-truction are directly related to each other. Material and service cost in construction activity can take up to 82% of the construction cost. Because of that, increasing the price of concrete in the market will give a chance to the contractor to reduce the quality of concrete by reducing the quantity of some materials. Our construction industry is far behind being sustainable compared to other industries. Owing to which we are playing a major role in creating problems for our present and coming generations. Two of the dominant problems from many are eco- unfriendly concrete and uneconomical construction. An attempt has been made by various researchers to maintain the durability, strength, and stability of the concrete structure while also reducing the cost of production. We also have an idea for getting rid of this problem which is mentioned below.

Use of Cow dung ash

Replacement of cement with cow dung ash can play an effective role in grappling with problems mentioned above. When we check the chemical composition of cow dung ash, we will come to know that it is pretty much similar to the chemical composition of cement. Therefore, by replacing some percentage of cement with cow dung ash, we can reduce the environment unfriendly impacts of concrete, and parallel to this we will also reduce the price of concrete. This technique will only be effective if we substitute 10% or more of the cement with the manure. Because the procedure of obtaining cow dung ash consumes a lot of energy, so replacing of 9% or less will be useless. However, the limitation of cow dung ash requires careful usage.

Use of Treated cow dung ash

As we discussed, the chemical composition of cow dung ash is somehow similar to the cement which has also been shown in the table below. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and energy-dispersive analysis (EDA) were used to determine the chemical composition of the CMA and FA. Accordingly, to make the ash more identical to the cement, we can add some chemicals in it. For example, Ca (Calcium) and Fe (Iron) can be a suitable replacement. But to test this, we must perform some tests, and after that we have to compare the statistical data of those tests which will have been performed with the standard values (for pure concrete).

With the care of the utility, cow dung ash could be able to alleviate the environmental impact caused by concrete. The good aspect is that engineers and scientists are making significant efforts to deal with this problem. Some potential solutions have been coming out, and cow dung ash is promising one since it could alleviate the environmental effects caused by traditional concrete.

18 March 2020
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