In 1968 the term "ICF" (Insulated Concrete Form) was not in existence. That was the year when a group of engineers set out to design a revolutionary building system, which could offer simplicity in use, quality, strength, at an affordable cost. Initially, large panels of expanded polystyrene (EPS) were used with diagonal and vertical holes cut into them which were to be filled with concrete once the panels are set in place – ultimately one such home was built.
It was a beginning - but the disadvantages of using EPS as the wall material and base for the finishing were obvious. Consequently, new ideas were explored, not only for better materials but also for enhanced shapes and sizes. At that time BASF, a German based company and also producer of polystyrene, was experimenting with a mixture of EPS beads and cement. However, a proper application for this material could not be found. Eventually this idea was adapted and a similar mix was used to produce wall panels. Soon the original RASTRA panel was born from the mountains of Austria to become part of the first RASTRA home.
Years of further development, testing, engineering, designing, expanding applications, and industrialization of the production process followed to achieve the state of the art product which is known as RASTRA today.