The University of Texas at El Paso
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 Solar Adobe Home Projects

 Solar Adobe Homes

In March, 2000, the Energy Center began a consulting/teaching project with Organizacion Progresiva de San Elizario. Progresiva is a non profit organization involved in community education and economic development in the small Town of San Elizario, located East of El Paso. Funding for the San Elizario Energy Efficient Housing Community Revitalization Project is through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The goal of the adobe project is to build 4 solar adobe/energy efficient homes in the community primarily through a self help construction process. Energy Center personnel have been involved throughout the pre-development phase of the project, assisting in the homes' solar design and energy efficiency features.

Energy Center personnel will serve as construction consultants, teaching the technical aspects of adobe construction to the homeowners and construction supervisors.

All the adobes for the homes are being made on site. Through a partnership with the local school district, students are employed after school and through the summer months. The adobes are made using mud (sand and clay) which is poured into a simple wood form. The form can be removed almost immediately and the brick will be left to dry for 2 to 3 days.

Following the initial drying period the bricks are stood on edge to speed up the drying process. The bricks can be stacked after 1 week. As with concrete, the adobe brick takes approximately 30 days to fully cure.


P.O. Box 68660 El Paso, Texas 79968 
Phone: 915/747-6643  
Fax: 915/747-5317