The road to sustainability: the superhighway built from paper waste instead of cement

  

Category:  Environment/Climate

Via:  hallux  •  one week ago  •  12 comments

By:   Paul Hackett

The road to sustainability: the superhighway built from paper waste instead of cement

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



At first glance the new stretch of motorway being built in the municipality of La Font de la Figuera near the Spanish city of Valencia looks like any other. But hidden secrets lie beneath its surface.

Thanks to pioneering tech, Spanish contractor   Acciona   is using paper ash to replace the cement that would normally go into the road’s construction to improve durability.

"In road construction, we need the strongest materials. And for that, we usually use cement. This paper ash doesn’t just look like cement. It meets all the technical requirements of cement, but it’s also more environmentally friendly," explains Acciona's R&D Project Manager, Juan Jose Cepria Pamplona.

Acciona believes using paper ash will enable it to significantly cut its carbon footprint.

"The potential impact of the project is enormous. We have calculated that we can save 65-75% of the associated CO2 emissions. And by 'scaling up' we could save up to 18,000 tonnes of cement per year, says Juan Jose.

But the benefit is not only carbon reduction. By using paper ash – that’s burnt waste paper and pulp that can no longer be recycled – the company is turning rubbish, that would most likely end up in landfill, into a resource.

The motorway in La Font de la Figuera is one of three pilot projects, but Juan Jose says Acciona has big plans for the future.

Our intention is to scale up and to extend its [paper ash] use nationally and eventually replicate it internationally," he says


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Hallux
Freshman Principal
1  seeder  Hallux    one week ago

One mile of road at a time ... and now for a word from the naysayers?

 
 
 
charger 383
PhD Quiet
2  charger 383    one week ago

Can they also use the heat from burning it to provide power for something else?

 
 
 
Hallux
Freshman Principal
2.1  seeder  Hallux  replied to  charger 383 @2    one week ago

It's Europe, so I would think so.

 
 
 
SteevieGee
Junior Silent
3  SteevieGee    one week ago

I like this.  Cement requires a massive amount of energy to make.  Burning paper creates energy.  As long as the cement you get from the paper is high quality it's a win win win.

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Masters Expert
4  Greg Jones    one week ago

It takes burning to produce this type of cement , which is a component of concrete   This produces CO2

I fail to see how this paper ash process can compare to the hardness and resistance to wear of regular concrete, and how it produces less greenhouse gases.

A cement is a binder , a substance used for construction that sets , hardens, and adheres to other materials to bind them together. Cement is seldom used on its own, but rather to bind sand and gravel ( aggregate ) together. Cement mixed with fine aggregate produces mortar for masonry, or with sand and gravel , produces concrete. Concrete is the most widely used material in existence and is behind only water as the planet's most-consumed resource. [2]

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
4.1  TᵢG  replied to  Greg Jones @4    one week ago
I fail to see how this paper ash process can compare to the hardness and resistance to wear of regular concrete, and how it produces less greenhouse gases.

You might have to do some research on the molecular properties of paper ash.   For example, one can start here :

Concrete is one of the versatile and widely used building materials in the world construction industry. Cement being the main binder in concrete, its production process is both uneconomical and environmental unfriendly. In order to alleviate these problems, the use of alternative materials which have lower cost of production, lower emission of CO 2 , and lower energy consumption, were being implemented. Therefore, the aim of this study is to investigate the effects of waste paper ash as cement replacement material in concrete production. Accordingly, chemical compositions of waste paper ash were investigated and cement was replaced by waste paper ash in a range of 0%, 5%, 10%, 15%, and 20%. To examine the suitability of paper ash for concrete production, its' effect on both fresh and hardened properties of C-25 concrete was studied. From result of this study, it was observed that, the chemical compositions of waste paper ash were not fulfill the requirements of Pozzolanic material. Paper ash has lengthened the setting times of blended cement paste and its normal consistency was increased. The cement paste with replacement up to 10% showed a normal consistency with in standard range. Workability of the concrete was tested immediately after preparing the concrete mix whereas the compressive strength tests were tested after 7, and 28 days of curing. The results indicated that workability of concrete containing waste paper ash decreases as the waste paper ash content increases. There is significant improvement in compressive strength of concrete. Replacement of ordinary Portland cement by waste paper ash up to 10% resulted in a better compressive strength than that of the convectional mix. An enhancement of 5.6% & 1.2% were observed for 5%, & 10% of replacement respectively. But the compressive strength decreases as the waste paper ash replacement increases over 10%. A highest compressive strength of 37.89kN/m 2 was obtained for concrete containing 5% of waste paper ash.

I would not dismiss an idea simply because you do not understand it.

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Masters Expert
4.1.1  Greg Jones  replied to  TᵢG @4.1    one week ago

I didn't dismiss it at all...just wanted more information...which you provided.

Thanks!  jrSmiley_12_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
5  Kavika     one week ago

Brillant, anything that helps the environment is worth pursuing.

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
Professor Principal
6  Bob Nelson    one week ago

Interesting seed. Thanks. 

 
 
 
Hallux
Freshman Principal
6.1  seeder  Hallux  replied to  Bob Nelson @6    one week ago

I get tired of the usual God, guns and abortions nonsense.

 
 
 
Hal A. Lujah
Professor Expert
7  Hal A. Lujah    one week ago

The interesting thing about traditional concrete is that it literally never stops hardening due to the long term chemical reaction in the materials.  I wonder if this mixture has the same property.

Its hard to imagine what infrastructure will look like 50 years from now.  I imagine that virtually all vehicles will be electric and that roadways will be designed to produce solar power which will wirelessly charge the vehicles traveling on it.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Principal
7.1  Gordy327  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @7    one week ago
The interesting thing about traditional concrete is that it literally never stops hardening due to the long term chemical reaction in the materials.

A little bit of trivia: The concrete used in the Hoover Dam would take up to 125 years to cure naturally. The dam itself can supposedly last 10,000 years. Quite a feat of engineering.

 
 
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