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2.0 Benefits

The many benefits of using Hebel PowerBlocks include:

Solid and strong:

Hebel PowerBlocks are made from Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (AAC), a strong, solid masonry building material with the advantage of being 25% the weight of conventional concrete.

Acoustic Performance:

Significantly reduced sound transmission from room-to-room.

Thermal Resistance:

Unique thermal properties result in a more stable inside temperature, reducing the energy
required to heat and cool your home, thereby reducing energy bills.

Environmentally friendly:

73% less embodied energy and 61% less greenhouse gas emissions than comparative masonry products*.

*Source: LCA Report GECA 2006

Fire Protection:

Non-combustible blocks with frameless construction deliver superior fire resistance. Hebel PowerBlock systems also allow you to build right up to your boundary line.

Pest resistance:

Not a food source for termites or vermin and no cavity construction eliminates the chance of harbouring pests.

Design Freedom:

Hebel PowerBlock Wall Systems provide absolute freedom to design and build your ultimate dream home – without compromise.

Technical Support:

Competent technical support through Hebel distributors.

Energy Efficiency

The unique combination of thermal resistance and thermal mass make building with Hebel a smart choice for meeting Australia’s stringent building regulations.

The thermal performance of a building depends on a number of factors such as orientation and size and aspect of windows. The R-Value of walls and floors can significantly affect the energy-rating outcome of dwellings. A 250mm Hebel PowerBlock has 3 times the R-Value of a cavity brick wall (BCA Vol. 2 Figure The use of Hebel in walls and floors will provide increased thermal performance that can allow more flexibility with other design aspects of a building.

The thermal efficiency of Hebel systems will also reduce the reliance on heating and cooling appliances. The combined effects of running a heater less in winter and fans or air conditioning less in summer can have a big impact on energy costs and the environment.

Single Skin Construction

The AAC masonry constructed from Hebel PowerBlock products is called “Plain Masonry” and the blocks are masonry units referred to as a “Solid Unit”. The type of solid unit is “Autoclaved aerated concrete masonry unit” complying with AS/NZS 4455 – Masonry Units and Segment Pavers.

The larger face dimension and being a single skin, Hebel PowerBlock walls are erected quickly when compared to double brick construction.

Image 2.1:  Hebel PowerBlock home

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6.0 Design Approach

There are 2 methods of construction – typical and tie-down. Typical is the most common method of building whilst the tie-down method is required for cyclonic or high wind areas (as determined by an engineer). This guide provides information for both building methods.

Important Note

It is the responsibility of the architectural designer and engineering parties to ensure that the information in the Hebel PowerBlocks Design and Installation Guide is appropriate for the intended application. The recommendations of this guide are formulated along the lines of good building practice, but are not intended to be an exhaustive statement of all relevant data. Hebel accepts no responsibility for or in connection with the quality of the recommendations or their suitability for any purpose when installed.


The Hebel PowerBlocks Design and Installation Guide has been created to provide information for detached residential buildings. The design information in this guide has been condensed from the Hebel Technical Manual and AS3700 Masonry structures. The design basis is AS3700 Masonry structures, Section 12 Simplified design of masonry for small buildings. The footing and slab design is based on AS2870 Residential slabs and footings – Construction.

Refer to Table 6.1 for Building Geometry Limitations.

Design Parameters

The structural design information in this guide is based on the data and assumptions in Table 6.2, 6.3 and 6.4.

Design Sequence

Fig. 6.1 details Hebel recommendations for how to design a Hebel PowerBlock

Fig 6.1:  Flow Chart.

Table 6.1: Buiding Geometry Limitations

2 storeys max
Max. height to underside of eaves 6.0m
Max. height to top of roof ridge 8.5m
Max. building width incl. verandah but not eaves 16.0m
Max. building length 5x width
Max. lower storey wall height 3.0m
Max. upper storey wall height 2.7m
Max. floor load width on external wall 3.0m (6.0m single span floor)
Max. roof load width on external wall 3.0m (6.0m rafter/truss span)
Max. floor load width on internal wall 6.0m

Where the building geometry is outside the above limitations, the designer must refer to the Hebel Technical Manual and AS3700 Sections 1-11.

Table 6.2: Design Parameters

Hebel PowerBlock material properties:
Nominal Dry Density 470 kg/m2
Working Density (S.T.) 611 kg/m2
Working Density (L.T.) 500 kg/m2
Characteristic Compressive Strength, f’m 2.25 MPa
Characteristic Flexural Tensile Strength, f’mt 0.20 MPa
Characteristic Shear Strength, f’ms 0.30 MPa
Characteristic Modulus of Elasticity, EST 1125 MPa
Characteristic Modulus of Elasticity, ELT 562 MPa

Table 6.3 Design Parameters – Permanent and Imposed Actions

Permanent Actions (Dead Loads):
Floor – Superimposed 1.00 kPa
Roof – Tile 0.90 kPa
Roof – Sheet 0.40 kPa
Framed Floor/Deck – Timber 0.50 kPa
Framed Deck – Tile 0.50 kPa
Pergola Roof – Tile 0.80 kPa
Pergola Roof – Sheet 0.32 kPa
Hebel PowerFloor System 0.80 kPa
Hebel Floor Panel System – 250mm 1.90 kPa
Hebel PowerBlock Wall – 250mm, 2700mm (H) 4.60 kN/m
Hebel PowerBlock Wall – 150mm, 2700mm (H) 2.76 kN/m
Imposed Actions (Live Loads):
In accordance with AS 1170. 1:2002
Floor – general 1.50 kPa
Deck 2.00 kPa

Table 6.4  Design Parameters – Wind Actions (General wall areas)

Wind Classification
Wind Pressure (kPa)
Serviceability, Ws Ultimate, Wu
N1 0.41 0.69
N2 0.41 0.96
N3 0.61 1.50
N4 0.91 2.23
N5 1.33 3.29
N6 1.82 4.44
C1 0.61 2.03
C2 0.91 3.01
C3 1.33 4.44
C4 1.82 5.99

 Image 6.1:  Hebel PowerBlock home

Image 6.2:  Hebel PowerBlock home

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14.0 Construction Details (Typical)

Base of Wall

Fig 14.1 Hebel PowerBlock work on Stiffened Raft Slab Edge Foundation (elevation)


Fig 14.2 Hebel PowerBlock work showing infill block to slab rebate (elevation)


Fig 14.3 Internal Load Bearing Hebel PowerBlock work on stiffened raft slab foundation (elevation)


Fig 14.4 Concrete PowerBlock Sub-Floor Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.5 Roof Top to Plate Fixing to Hebel Wall – Strap (elevation) – for vaulted/cathedral roofs


Fig 14.6 Roof Top to Plate Fixing to Hebel Wall – Strap (elevation) – for typical trussed roof


Fig 14.7  Strap Fixing to Hebel Walls (isometric – typical trussed roof)


Fig 14.8  Double Brick Sub-Floor Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.9 Ring Beam Internal Non-Loadbearing Wall (elevation)

Top of Wall

Fig 14.10 Internal Hebel Load Bearing Wall and Timber Floor Frame Junction (elevation)


Fig 14.11 Truss Spanning Over Non-Load Bearing Hebel Walls (elevation)


Fig 14.12 Timber Truss/Joist Fixed to Hebel Walls (elevation)


Fig 14.13  Tiled Roof Eve and Hebel Wall Junction (elevation)


Fig 14.14  Vaulted Ceiling & Roof Top Plate Fixing To Hebel  Wall (elevation)

Wall Junctions

Fig 14.15  External Wall and Internal Partition Wall Junction  (plan)


Fig 14.16  External Corner with Control Joint (plan)

Control Joints

Fig 14.17 Control Joint detail (elevation)


Fig 14.18 Typical Bond Beam Control Joint – elevation


Fig 14.19 Typical Control Joint – plan 


Fig 14.20 Typical Ring Beam Control Joint – elevation


Fig 14.21 Hebel PowerBlock work Typical Movement Joint Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.22 Hebel PowerBlock work Typical Movement Joint Detail (plan)


Fig 14.23 Built-in Column Detail (plan)


Fig 14.24 Built-in Column Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.25 Non-Load Bearing Hebel PowerBlock Wall and Hebel Floor Panel Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.26 Loadbearing Hebel PowerBlock Wall and Floor Panel Junction Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.27  Loadbearing Hebel PowerBlock Wall and Timber Floor Frame Junction Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.28 Timber Floor Support Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.29  Hebel Flooring Panels using Ring Anchor Construction on Load Bearing Interior Wall (elevation)


Fig 14.30 Ceiling Support Detail A (elevation)


Fig 14.31  Ceiling Support Detail B (isometric)

NOTE: Refer to section 7.12 of the Hebel Technical Manual for the full set of Details on the Floor Panel System.

Balcony and Deck

Fig 14.32  Balcony Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.33  Balcony Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.34  Deck Connection Detail (side elevation)


Fig 14.35 Deck Connection Detail (front elevation)


Fig 14.36  Stairwell (isometric)


Fig 14.37  Stair Tread Set-Out (isometric)


Fig 14.38 200mm wide x 50mm thick Hebel PowerBlocks adhered to walls on their ends to provide support for treads (isometric)


Fig 14.39 Steel Door Frame (Internal or External) to Hebel Wall Fixing (plan)


Fig 14.40  Steel Door Frame (Internal or External) to Hebel Wall Fixing (plan)


Fig 14.41  Timber Door Frame (External) to Hebel Wall Fixing (plan)


Fig 14.42  Timber Door Frame (Internal) to Hebel Wall Fixing (plan)


Fig 14.43  Aluminium Window Frame – Window Sill Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.44 Aluminium Window Frame – Window Jamb Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.45  Aluminium Window Frame – Window Head Detail (elevation)


Fig 14.46 Lintel Installation
(a) Elevation

(b) Section

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