Date Palm Surface Fibers for Green Thermal Insulation

Mohsin Raza, Hyder Al Abdallah, Ayah Abdullah, Basim Abu-Jdayil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Some of the major challenges of the twenty-first century include the continued increase in energy consumption and environmental pollution. One approach to overcoming these challenges is to increase the use of waste materials and environmentally friendly manufacturing methods. The high energy consumption in the building sector contributes significantly to global climatic changes. Here, by using date palm surface fibers, a high-performance green insulation material was developed via a simple technique that did not rely on any toxic ingredients. Polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) was used as a binding agent. Four insulation samples were made, each with a different density within the range of 203 to 254 kg/m3. Thermal conductivity and thermal diffusivity values for these four green insulators were 0.038–0.051 W/(m · K) and 0.137–0.147 mm2/s, respectively. Thermal trans-mittance (U−value) of the four insulation composites was between 3.8–5.1 W/m2 · K, which was in good comparison to other insulators of similar thickness. Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) showed that insulating sample have excellent thermal stability, with an initial degradation temperature of 282 °C, at which just 6% of its original weight is lost. Activation energy (Ea) analysis re-vealed the fire-retardancy and weakened combustion characteristics for the prepared insulation composite. According to differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) measurements, the insulating sample has a melting point of 225 °C, which is extremely close to the melting point of the binder. The fiber-based insulating material’s composition was confirmed by using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). The ultimate tensile range of the insulation material is 6.9–10 MPa, being a reasonable range. Our study’s findings suggest that developing insulation materials from date palm waste is a promising technique for developing green and low-cost alternatives to petroleum-based high-cost and toxic insulating materials. These insulation composites can be installed in building envelopes during construction.

Original languageEnglish
Article number866
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


  • building insulation
  • date palm surface fibers
  • green insulation
  • insulation material
  • thermal conductivity
  • thermogravimetric analysis
  • waste management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Architecture
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction


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