Brick making technology using construction wastes wins UKRI circular economy fund

A Liverpool-based firm has won a share of a £1.5m government fund to apply LJMU technology to create more eco-friendly construction projects.

Civil Engineers at the university have developed a novel geopolymer technology to manufacture unfired bricks from the wastes generated from construction, demolition and excavation, saving carbon and reducing emissions.

Now Kirby-based CCC Ltd - one of the largest suppliers to major construction projects in the north west – has won a share of Innovate UK’s new £1.5 million in circular economy innovation projects, part of the UKRI National Interdisciplinary Circular Economy Research programme (NICER).

A circular economy is a systemic approach to economic development designed to benefit businesses, society and the environment; in contrast to the 'take-make-waste' linear model. CCC Ltd will now upscale this technology into a circular-economy business model.

Dr Monower Sadique, Reader in Construction Materials in the School of Civil Engineering and Built Environment, who developed the technology with colleague Dr Iacopo Carnacina, explained that the manufacture of common bricks and cement-based mortar blocks is not only energy intensive but consumes enormous amount of natural minerals.

He said: “This ambitious idea can be considered an example of technological innovation over the whole materials life cycle, to reduce use and impacts of virgin minerals and energy.

Dr Carnacina, Reader in Water and Environmental Engineering, said: “This solution to climate adaptation will be a game-changer and is highly attractive for its low cost and carbon footprint as well as it provides a novel solution that cannot be achieved with existing technology.”

Professor Mike Riley, Director of School of Civil Engineering and Built Environment said, this project is highly innovative, ambitious, and pioneering, addressing key environmental and waste management challenges in the construction industry.


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