A new generation of insulating materials

At the Université de Rennes 1, Christophe Lanos and his team, from the LGCGM research unit - Civil and Mechanical Engineering Laboratory - have chosen to further their research on this theme by participating in the European ISOBIO project.
Développement de composites bio-sourcés : échelle du matériau à celle du bâtiment.


The ISOBIO project, funded under the European Horizon 2020 programme, seeks to propose a new generation of highly insulating materials. It is based on the combination of aggregates of plant origin, with a low carbon footprint and innovative binders. The aim is to optimise the construction process and increase the competitiveness of green building.

The idea

The materials developed within the framework of the ISOBIO project are part of a sustainable development context, more particularly the reduction of environmental and energy costs of construction. They exploit the natural properties of moisture sorption and desorption in bio-based materials. These properties have several effects: they lead to a passive regulation of the indoor environment, they improve air quality and they provide a real thermo-hydric comfort while reducing the demand for air conditioning. The use of these bio-sourced aggregates reduces the energy footprint associated with the life of the structure by taking advantage of photosynthesis which leads to the sequestration of atmospheric carbon within the envelope.

Improving insulation while reducing costs

In reference to traditional products derived from petroleum products, these new composites should reduce the carbon footprint associated with the production of insulation panels by more than 50%. The solution developed should improve thermal insulation by at least 20% compared to traditional systems. In addition, the use of plant-based aggregates coupled with a vertical development of the solution - from the design of the basic constituents to the development of the construction system - should enable the ISOBIO project partners to offer a solution that is 15% more economical than traditional solutions.


The ISOBIO project involves 11 European partners of 6 nationalities:

•TWI Ltd - Coordinator

•University of Bath

•Université de Rennes 1

•CAVAC Biomatériaux


•Norsk Institutt For Skog og Landskap

•Acciona Infraestructuras S.A.

•Stramit International Ltd

•Greenovate! Europe


•ProGETIC Projectes Sostenibles SL

Identity card

European project ISOBIO - HORIZON 2020 Programme

Name of the Scientific Leader: Christophe LANOS
Laboratory / UMR: Civil and Mechanical Engineering Laboratory - EA 3913
Project duration: From 01/02/15 to 31/01/19 (4 years)