Recycling of gypsum boards wastes is attractive but challenging at the same time. The quality and quantity of the waste is quite important. The amount of gypsum board waste is on the rise. Millions of tons of gypsum board waste are produced annually and only a small percentage of gypsum board waste is recycled. This waste threatens the environment in three main ways: producing Hydrogen Sulfide gas when dumped in a moist environment, increasing the use of landfills and depleting natural resources. Consequently, the United States is considering the prohibition of gypsum board waste partial or full dumping in landfills that contain biodegradable waste. Furthermore, the European Union has set some regulations to control the amount of disposable gypsum board waste in landfills. This study aims to recycle the waste gypsum boards in order to be used in feasible applications. It targets the possibility of utilizing gypsum board waste to produce new gypsum boards or to produce non-load bearing gypsum bricks. To meet this objective, flexural strength test was conducted for the gypsum boards samples. Moreover, standard tests such as compressive strength, flexural strength, water absorption and density, were performed on the gypsum bricks. Three phases of gypsum board waste were examined: unheated gypsum board waste ( ), gypsum board waste heated at 130 ( ), and heated gypsum at 250 ( ). The results of this research show that the highest flexural strength for gypsum boards was obtained when adding 0.5% of Zinc Sulfate to the heated gypsum board waste. The flexural strength of produced gypsum board exceeded that of the commercial gypsum board available in the market. Moreover, the results of the non-load bearing gypsum bricks demonstrate that the mechanical properties of these bricks meet the non-load bearing bricks standards. The recommended unheated gypsum brick mix is the one conducted using 0.3% of Zinc Sulfate. The compressive strength of the obtained sample exceeded the ASTM limit for concrete non-load bearing bricks as well as the National standard when tested after seven and fourteen days. The gypsum bricks that were conducted from mixing heated gypsum board waste with Zinc Sulfate did not meet the ASTM limit for concrete non-load bearing bricks. However, the compressive strength limit in the Egyptian Standard for non-load bearing cement bricks was achieved when adding 0.3% of Zinc Sulfate to the heated gypsum board waste. In conclusion, this study pinpoints the importance of recycling waste gypsum boards and provides the initiative of using this waste in suitable applications.


Environmental Engineering Program

Degree Name

MS in Environmental Engineering

Graduation Date


Submission Date

February 2014

First Advisor

El-Haggar, Salah

Committee Member 1

El-Gendy, Ahmed

Committee Member 2

El-Sheltawy, Shakiz


127 p.

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Library of Congress Subject Heading 1


Library of Congress Subject Heading 2



The author retains all rights with regard to copyright. The author certifies that written permission from the owner(s) of third-party copyrighted matter included in the thesis, dissertation, paper, or record of study has been obtained. The author further certifies that IRB approval has been obtained for this thesis, or that IRB approval is not necessary for this thesis. Insofar as this thesis, dissertation, paper, or record of study is an educational record as defined in the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 USC 1232g), the author has granted consent to disclosure of it to anyone who requests a copy.

Institutional Review Board (IRB) Approval

Not necessary for this item


This study would never have come to fruition without the support and encouragement of many people both on and off campus. My deepest thanks go to my advisor, Dr. Salah El Haggar, who offered me unfailing guidance and assistance throughout all phases of my research. Your endless patience will always be remembered with gratitude. I would also like to extend heartfelt thanks to Eng. Mahrous and Dr. Abdel Moteleb from Osmaboards. Eng. Mahrous supported me not only by providing needed materials, but also by believing in the importance of my Thesis. Dr. Abdel Moteleb provided valuable help with the Data Alysis. Thank you both for your support. Thanks also go to Eng. Zakareya Yehia from the Materials Testing Lab for allowing me to use his lab to conduct flexural strength testing. I am also grateful to Mr. Mohamed Saeed and Mr. Kassem at the Technology & Innovation Lab for assisting me with the lab work throughout all stages of the Thesis. I owe a debt of gratitude to my parents, family members, and friends for supporting me throughout this journey with their patience, love, and understanding. I could not have done this with you.