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building_blockA new masonry building block designed at King Saud University received a US patent entitled: Masonry building block and interlocking wall system incorporating such blocks.

A rectangular shaped interlocking building block comprises a pair of exterior sides and an upper and a lower longitudinally extending horizontal faces developed by Saleh H. Alsayed, Husain Abbas, Yousef A. Al-Salloum, Mohammad S. Al-Haddad from the civil engineering department at the College of Engineering.

Thamer_Albahkali_newIPTL_directorThamer A. Albahkali, director of Intellectual Property and Technology Licensing Program (IPTL) at KSU informed, the present invention contemplates a generally rectangular masonry building block and an interlocking wall structure that utilizes such blocks. The building blocks comprise or consist of a pair of opposite longitudinally extending sidewalls, a pair of upper and lower longitudinally extending faces and a pair of opposite vertical end walls.

The features of blocks that make them distinct from what are available globally are that the blocks have two types of cavities – one for embedding rebars which will have to be grouted in case reinforcement is used and another for embedding conduits for accommodating electrical wiring, TV and telephone cables, water pipes…etc. which are isolated from grouted cavities thus making their future replacement feasible.

In addition, the blocks may be used for non-load bearing walls for which the grouting is not required and the blocks may also be used for load bearing walls for which grouting may or may not be required depending upon the magnitude of loads the wall is supposed to carry. The use of blocks without grouting for load bearing applications gives it an added advantage in the construction of walls carrying smaller magnitude of gravity loads especially in the construction of low cost single storey residential complexes leading to saving in construction time. These blocks can also be used with appropriate reinforcement for fast construction of load bearing walls in multi-storied buildings including their construction in earthquake prone areas.

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