Study of Raw Materials for Manufacturing Perforated Clay Bricks (Chamchamal, and Qaradagh Regions in Sulaimani / Iraq)

Kamal Ahmad Rashed [ Civil Engineering Department– College of Engineering - University of Sulaimani]

Received : 22/02/2017

Accepted : 06/04/2017

DOI Link:



There is no information about the optimum molding moisture content and molding pressure on the physical and mechanical properties of clay bricks. In this paper, the effect of moisture content and applied pressure during molding of brick samples for two selected locations of Sulaimani province in Iraq were studied. After firing the molded brick samples at a temperature of 1000oC, the physical and mechanical properties were studied from the following tests: firing shrinkage, water absorption, dry density and uniaxial compressive strength. The results indicate that the optimum moisture content for molding and manufacturing of clay bricks is within (0.6 to 0.7) of plastic limit of the raw materials. Also, it was found that the sufficient applied pressure during molding of clay bricks is 6 MPa.

KEYWORDS: Perforated clay bricks, Density, Compression strength, Water absorption, Fired shrinkage, Chamchamal, Qaradagh.


1- American Society for Testing and Material, 2015 “ Annual Book of ASTM Standard”.

2- BS.3921: 1985, “British Standards specification, clay bricks”.

3- Das, B. M. (2016) “Principles of Geotechnical Engineering” Pws-kent Publishing Company – Boston.

4- Day, R. W. (2001) “ Soil Testing Manual” Mc Graw- Hill Inc.

5- Dondi, M., Fabbri, B. and Guarini, G., (1998). “Grain-size distribution of Italian raw materials for building clay products: a reappraisal of the Winkler diagram”. Clay Minerals, 33(3), pp.435-442.

6- Head, K. H. (1981) “ Manual of Soil Laboratory Testing” Vol. 1, Vol. 2 & Vol. 3 , Pentch press , London.

7- IQ, 25, 1969, “Iraqi standard specification, Clay building bricks”.

8- Johari, I., Said, S., Hisham, B., Bakar, A. and Ahmad, Z.A., (2010). Effect of the Change of Firing Temperature on Microstructure and Physical Properties of Cay Bricks from Beruas (Malaysia)”. Science of Sintering, 42(2), pp.245-254.

9- Merza, T. A., 2002. “Assessment of some Clays from Gercus Formation (M. Eocene) for Brick Manufacture, Sulaimani Area, NE Iraq”. Journal of Zankoy Sulaimani (Part A), Vol. 5 (1), May 2002, pp. 57-67.

10- Merza, T. A., 2005. “Manufacture of Brick Tiles from Local Raw Materials, N & NE Iraq”. Journal of Zankoy Sulaimani dec. 2005, 8 (1) Part A , PP. 31-45.

11- Mauloud, Y. I., 2006. “Improvement of Arbil Brick Products”. Zanco Journal of Pure and Applied Science. Vol. (18), No. 3, 2006.

12- Mauloud, Y. I. (2007). “Straw Stabilized Local Clay Bricks”. Zanco Journal of Pure and Applied Science. Vol. (10), No. 2, 2007.

13- Mawlood, Y. I., Bottany, A. A., & Peerdawood C. T. (2010). “Effect of Drying Methods and Sand Additive on Shrinkage Cracks of an Expansive Soil”. Zanco Journal of Pure and Applied Sciences. Vol. (22), No. 4., 2010.

14- Moutou, J. M., Mbedi, R., Elimbi, A., Njopwouo, D., Yvon, J., Barres, O., & Ntekela, H. R. (2012). “Mineralogy and Thermal Behaviour of the Kaolinitic Clay of Loutété (Congo-Brazzaville)”. Research Journal of Environmental and Earth Sciences, 4(3), PP 316-324.

15- Mohajerani, A., Abdul Kadir, A. 2013. “Physical and mechanical properties of fired clay bricks incorporated with cigarette butts: Comparison between slow and fast heating rates”. In Applied Mechanics and Materials (Vol. 421, pp. 201-204). Trans Tech Publications.

16- Mauloud, Y.I., 2015. “Control of Cracks due to Drying Shrinkage of an Expansive Soil Using Different Drying Mechanisms and Filler Additive”. ZANCO Journal of Pure and Applied Sciences, 27(1), pp.31-40.