Buildings made out of blood sounds like something straight out of a horror movie, but according to recent architectural graduate Jack Munro, it may be the way of the future. "Blood bricks"—we're sensing a strong contender for the A+ "Materials" Award—could be a cheap and sustainable alternative for construction in underdeveloped areas, especially because blood is one of the most-wasted "materials" in the world. Did you know one slaughtered cow produces eight gallons of blood that is usually just thrown away?
As Co.Design reports, Munro, a 2012 graduate of London's University of Westminster, conducted tireless experiments with blood, collecting it from four cows, adding antibacterial agents, and mixing it with sand. He then baked the product and realized very quickly that the elements were bonding together.
His work has yet to create a traditional, strong brick, but he has crafted a sticky glue and even a waterproof brick-like material. This characteristic is key for building in arid climates such as the Middle East and Northern Africa, where erosion tends to wreck havoc on traditional housing such as mud huts.
His extensive proposal considers the economic factors of using blood for bricks in underdeveloped areas. He imagines a blood brick factory in Egypt, where blood waste from halal animal slaughter can be used in architecture. The factory would offer reliable work opportunities for local residents, whose livelihood is often tied to crops that are vulnerable to unpredictable weather.
Though this whole idea gives us the chills, we have to admit, Munro may be onto something.