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Major money injection for low-carbon concrete

reinforced concrete

Investment overseas is pouring significant cash into the low-carbon concrete industry as part of a sustainability drive.

Researchers at Imperial College London received more than $1 million from the British Government to help their new low-carbon concrete project.

Researchers at the college are testing a new method of developing a “carbon negative” cement additive. The focus of the project is magnesium silicate minerals such as olivine being transformed into supplementary cementitious material (SCM).

Researchers believe the process has shown promising signs that it can capture CO2 and if the material was strong enough, the additive could help cement become a more carbon-neutral material to use.

Lord Callanan, Energy Efficiency and Green Finance Minister said it was exciting to see more movement in the low-carbon concrete space.

“Britain has a long and proud history of pushing the boundaries in science,” he said.
“The transition away from fossil fuels presents a huge opportunity for our growing green energy sector and we will continue to make sure UK business can benefit from its full potential.”

Professor Chris Cheeseman, of Imperial’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering explained how the process could yield positive results for the building industry.

“Combining the production of a cement replacement material with carbon capture is a really innovative approach that has massive potential to decarbonise cement, concrete and therefore construction,” Professor Cheeseman told SG Voice.

While there will need to be significant testing to ensure concrete with the additive maintains strength and durability, there is hope it could be adapted into building codes at the government level in the future.

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