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The library of essays of Proakatemia

Sustainable sheep



Kirjoittanut: Irene Lai - tiimistä SYNTRE.

Esseen tyyppi: Yksilöessee / 2 esseepistettä.
Esseen arvioitu lukuaika on 4 minuuttia.

Introduction 

 

Sheep are the dominant animal in Sardinia. First, to understand how important the sheep are there, it would be enough to consider some numbers: only 1.6 millions of persons live there but over 4 million sheep live in Sardinia, which is by far the most of any Italian territory. In fact, the island has the highest animal density per kilometer in the entire world!
Sardinia is the second-largest island in the Mediterranean, well known for its dairy products, particularly pecorino cheeses made from sheep’s milk. Considering the number of sheep, this kind of cheese is one of the most important goods produced in the island, and it has been studied quite a lot in the recent past to make it always more innovative in its own tradition (to know more about it, please read my “The healthy taste of cheese” essay).  

But as we know, sheep do not only produce meat but wool that protects the animal from harsh weather and may be used to build clothing that shields us from it too. Historically also, because sheep can feed anywhere and provide wool as well as meat, men have taken sheep along on their migrations and over time they learnt always new ways to use the animal’s potential. Other than that, in fact, many of their byproducts nowadays are also used in producing numerous consumer goods that improve our convenience and health.
With the numbers that I have mentioned before, no wonder that the annual production of wool in Italy is at 9000 tons, and up to 48% is coming only from Sardinia (Sardegna Ricerche). 

This essay will focus on wool and on its innovative potential developed through Brebey’s experience. 

 

 

What’s new – Brebey S.c.a.r.l. company’s experience 

 

Since antiquity people have known the excellent value of wool which has been so highly used in the textile industry. 

Wool is harvested by shearing or cutting the sheep’s wool off. Sheep breeds have distinctive characteristics which give the wool unique and different properties. In any case the general properties of the fibers are more or less the same: they are extremely elastic and resistant, capable of retaining heat and absorbing humidity, as well as promoting natural perspiration. These properties enrich the finished fabric with distinctive qualities preserving its naturalness. Items made with fabric are wear resistant. This means that wool can keep its shape when it comes to wear and tear. Wool is a good absorber. Because of this, wool will soak up dyes very well. Wool absorbs water and keeps the skin dry, making the skin feel comfortable. 

With all these characteristics, it becomes easy to get how precious this resource is. 

Brebey S.c.a r.l. is a Sardinian cooperative company created in 2012 that decided to use all this potential in a very different way than usual, producing in fact panels based on sheep’s wool. “With the exclusive Brebey technology it is possible to safeguard the health of your building and its inhabitants.” (Brebey S.c.a.r.l.)
Brebey (whose name comes from Sardinian dialect in which brebei means “sheep”) is in fact a company that started using wool as insulation in the construction industry. It has designed and developed an innovative technology to produce natural products with heat-insulating and sound-absorbing properties comparable to those of the best synthetic and mineral insulators on the market, with the assistance of researchers from the Department of Territorial Engineering of the University of Cagliari. The company declares also: “Sheep’s wool is a resource, never a problem, and its use as thermo-acoustic insulation represents an innovation in the sector, in environmental and effectiveness terms.”
A very sustainable resource that can be used in rolls or panels for insulation thermal and acoustic available in different thicknesses. Plus, it seems to have many benefits too, such being resistant to parasites, other insects, and moth attacks.
Moreover, it does not release dust and allergens, synthetic components, or toxic solvents volatiles in neighboring environments, or either toxic compounds in case of fire since it does not melt or does not spread flame. 

There is no question that Brebey created a product with exceptional performance and sustainability for both people and the environment. 

 

 

Conclusion 

 

Not anymore only sweaters from wool then. 

Brebey has designed and developed an innovative technology to produce heat-insulating and sound-absorbing panels made of wool, a natural product from the sheep. Sheep’s wool can be a high-performance, long-lasting, and environmentally friendly natural insulator. Moreover, because of its high mechanical resistance and flexibility, these panels demonstrate sustainable transportation through vacuum packaging and simple site installation. 

An animal-derived fabric that makes the perfect sustainable option for houses’ thermo-acoustic insulation. Since future developments support sustainable decisions, it is critical to concentrate now more than ever on renewable solutions in the field of materials and this can be an important and precious product that can help reduce the synthetic insulators already in the market.  

After all, some certain types of wool in particular are already expensive for their unique characteristics, this already highlights a potential in the raw material that has not been shown completely yet. 
What else can future innovation bring us from such a multifaceted product? 

References 

 

Alfe, Lana di pecora come isolante: vantaggi e caratteristiche https://www.alferappresentanze.it/lana-di-pecora-come-isolante-vantaggi-e-caratteristiche/ Read 04.12.2022 

Brebey – La lana ecologica, You tube video, Brebey – La lana ecologica – Pannello TECNOLANA 4075 Watched 06.12.2022  

Brebey Scarl, Sardegna Ricerche, https://www.sardegnaricerche.it/index.php?xsl=370&s=419395&v=2&c=3236&sc&o=1&t=3 Read 30.11.2022 

Brebey – Tecnologie con la lana, https://www.brebey.com/ Read 30.11.2022 

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