Open Journal Systems

Mechanical and structural properties of termite soil as a partial replacement to cement for different applications

Assia A. Mahamat 1, Salifu T. Azeko 2

Article ID: 681
Vol 2, Issue 2, 2018, Article identifier:

VIEWS - 543 (Abstract) 259 (PDF)


This paper presents the results of the experimental and theoretical study of the mechanical and structural properties of termite soil as a partial replacement to cement for different applications, especially in the building/construction industry. Different volume fractions of termite soil are mixed with Portland cement and their compressive and flexural strengths as well as fracture toughness values are determined. The mechanical properties of the composites are also elucidated after curing the samples for 7 days, 14 days and 28 days. The study shows that the 28 days Compressive strength decreases with increasing volume percentage of termite soil for volume percentages up to 60%. The 28 day strength was also greater than the requirement of (NIS 87: 2000) for non-bearing load walls (δmin=2.8N/mm²› 2.5 N/mm²). The flexural strength for 20% replacement (at all curing days) was greater than 7 N/mm². The fracture toughness was also observed to decrease with increasing volume percentage of termite soil up to 20 vol. %. This resulted in a maximum fracture toughness of 4.24  for the materials with 20 vol. % of termite soil stabilization. The samples are then characterized via X-ray Diffraction (XRD) and Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy (EDX). The implications of the results are discussed for the development of sustainable termite-stabilized building materials.


Termite Soil; Compressive/Flexural Strengths; Fracture Toughness; EDX; XRD

Full Text:


Included Database


Naik T. Sustainability of concrete construction. ASCE Practice Periodical on Structural Design and Construction 2008; 13(2): 98–103.

Http:// Alternative to Portland cement, practical action. Building Advisory Service and Information Network BASIN.

Berry M, Cross D, Stephens J. Changing the environment: An alternative “green” concrete produced without Portland cement”. World of coal ash conference; 2009.

Millogo Y, Hajjaji M, Morel JC. Physical properties, microstructure and mineralogy of termite mound material considered as construction materials. Applied Clay Science 2011; 52(1–2): 160–164.

Alake O, Olusola KO, Ogunjimi IOA. Abrasion resistance and water absorption characteristics of mound lime blended cement mortar mixtures. Proceedings of the OAU faculty of technology conference 2015; 134–138.

Otieno MO, Kabubo CK, Gariy ZA. A study of uncalcined termite clay soil as partial replacement in cement as a sustainable material for roofing tiles in low cost housing schemes in Kenya. International Journal of Engineering and Advanced Technology (IJEAT) 2015; ISSN: 2249 – 8958, Volume-4 Issue-3

Udoeyo FF, Cassidy AO, Jajere S. Mound soil as construction material. Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering 2000; 12(3): 205–211.

Elinwa AU. Experimental characterization of Portland cement-clacined soldier-ant mount clay cement mortar and concrete, Construction and Building Materials 2006; 20(9): 754–760.

Kumar DS, Rajeev C. Development of self-compacting concrete by use of Portland pozolana cement, hydrated lime and silica fume. ISCA Journal of Engineering Sciences 2012; 1(1): 35–39.

Selvamony C, Ravikumar MS, Kanaan SU, et al. Development of high strength self-compacting self-curing concrete with mineral admixtures 2009; Pan 90, 9.55.

Ghrici M, Kenai S, Said-Mansour M. Mechanical properties and durability of mortar and concrete containing natural pozzolana and limestone blended cements. Cement and Concrete Composites 2007; 29(7): 542–549.

Ahmad MI, Sajjad M, Khan IA, et al. Sustainable production of cement in Pakistan through addition of natural pozzolana. Chemical Industry and Chemical Engineering Quarterly 2016; 22(1): 41–45.

Belaidi ASE, Azzouz L, Kadri E, et al. Effects of natural pozzolana and marble powder on the peoperties of self-compacting concrete. Construction and Building Materials 2012; 31: 251–257.

Savastano Jr. H, Warden PG, Coutts RSP. Ground iron blast furnace slag as a matrix for cellulose-cement materials. Cement Concrete Composite 2001; 23: 389–397.

Tonoli GHD, Savastano Jr. H, Fuentec E, et al. Eucalyptus pulp fibres as alternative reinforcement to engineered cement-based composites. Industrial Crops and Products 2010; 31: 225–232.

Mustapha K, Annan E, Azeko ST, et al. Strength and fracture toughness of earth-based natural fiber-reinforced composites. Journal of Composite Materials 2016; 50(9): 1145–1160.

Mustapha K, Azeko ST, Annan E, et al. Pull-out behavior of natural fiber from earth-based matrix. Journal of Composite Materials 2016; 50(25): 3539–3550.

Azeko ST, Mustapha K, Annan E, et al. Recycling of polyethylene into strong and tough earth-Based composite building materials. Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering 2016; 28(2): 04015104.

Azeko ST, Mustapha K, Annan E, et al. Statistical distributions of the strength and fracture toughness of recycled polyethylene-reinforced laterite composites. Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering 2016; 28(3): 04015146.

Azeko ST, Arthur EK, Danyuo Y, et al. Mechanical and physical properties of laterite bricks reinforced with reprocessed polyethylene waste for building applications. Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering 2018; 30(4): 04018039.

Pavithran C, Mukherjee PS, Brahmakumar M, et al. Impact properties of natural fibre composites. Journal of Materials Science Letters 1987; 6(8): 882–884.

Pavithran, C, Mukherjee PS, Brahmakumar M, et al. Impact performance of sisal – polyester composites. Journal of Materials Science Letters, London 1988; 7, 825–826.

Maleque MA, Belal FY, Sapuan SM. Mechanical properties study of pseudo-stem banana fiber reinforced epoxy composite. Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering 2007; 32(2B): 359–364.

Awoyera PO, Akinwumi II. Compressive strength development for cement, lime and termite-hill stabilised lateritic bricks. The International Journal of Engineering and Science 2014; 3(2): 37–43. ISSN 2319 – 1813.

Choobbasti AJ, Vafaei A, Kutanaei SS. Mechanical properties of sandy soil improved with cement and nanosilica. Open Engineering 2015; 5(1).

Olaoye GS, Anigbogu NA. Properties of compressed earth bricks stabilized with termite mound material. Nigeria Journal of Construction Technology and Management 2000; 3:1.

Soboyejo WO. Mechanical properties of engineered materials. Toughening mechanisms, Marcel Dekker Inc., New York 2002; 152.

Callister Jr. WD. Materials science and engineering: an introduction. Structure and Properties of Ceramics, Wiley, New York 2007; 7: 415–459.

BS: 812: Part 2: 1975. Testing Aggregates. Methods for Determination of Physical Properties.

(543 Abstract Views, 259 PDF Downloads)


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2018 Assia A. Mahamat 1, Salifu T. Azeko 2

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.