bendable concrete made from waste materials offers greener alternative to cement

bendable concrete made from waste materials offers greener alternative to cement

a new type of concrete made out of waste materials has been developed and patented by researchers at swinburne. offering a greener solution to cement, it incorporates waste products such as fly ash — a by-product of coal-fired power stations — and uses 36 per cent less energy than conventional concrete.


the material can bend under load making it suited for construction in earthquake zones where the brittle nature of conventional concrete often leads to collapse. it also incorporates short polymeric fibres it can sustain multiple hair-sized cracks when put under tension or bending and not break into pieces.

bendable concrete made from waste materials offers greener alternative to cement



‘concrete is the most widely used construction material in the world,’ says arc decra fellow at swinburne’s centre for smart infrastructure and digital construction, dr nematollahi. ‘in fact, it is the second-most consumed material by human beings after water. its quality has a massive effect on the resilience of our infrastructure such as buildings, bridges and tunnels.’

bendable concrete made from waste materials offers greener alternative to cement



raditional concrete has a huge carbon footprint due to calcination of limestone to produce its key ingredient, cement, which holds it together. by using industrial waste products, dr nematollahi and colleagues have done away with the need for cement, making the product more sustainable. the bendable composite also cuts energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions during production because it can be cured at room temperature. 


‘production of this novel concrete requires about 36 per cent less energy and emits up to 76 per cent less carbon dioxide as compared to conventional bendable concrete made of cement.’

bendable concrete made from waste materials offers greener alternative to cement



‘building in areas vulnerable to that sort of natural disaster is one of the main uses that we can see for this material,’ dr nematollahi adds. ‘our laboratory test results showed that this novel concrete is about 400-times more bendable than normal concrete, yet has similar strength.’


project info


institution: swinburne university of technology
journal: construction and building materials

  • This is not new, as you stated in your article. Also see Patent was filed in 2005
    „Method for producing components, especially structural panels, from solid waste“
    Homes using this material have been build in 2005/2006 and still used in KZN

    Gottfried Vom Orde says:
  • The panels using solid waste, fly ash and cement, which we produced are tested and reached a strength of 33 Mpa

    Gottfried Vom Orde says:

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