On October 31, the world’s population hit seven billion, representing an increase of one billion people in just the past 12 years. And The United Nations estimates that we’ll tack on another billion by 2025.
In order to accommodate such staggering population growth, we’ll need to drastically expand infrastructure across the globe. That’s why we’re on the cusp of a major construction industry boom.
Unfortunately, construction accounts for 10% of the world’s carbon emissions, according to the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. So an industry uptick would really put a damper on global carbon reduction goals.
That is, unless Solidia Technologies has something to say about it.
You see, the New Jersey-based company is on the fast track to green-ifying the construction industry with a new technology that actually recycles waste products into building materials.
Here’s how it works…
The Carbon Negative Concrete Replacement
Solidia has developed a revolutionary platform to manufacture construction materials like stone and plastic.
The proprietary technology is based on a process invented at Rutgers, known as Low Temperature Solidification (LTS). It combines waste materials, natural minerals, and carbon dioxide under a low temperature and low-pressure setting.
The result is building materials that are:
~ Durable: The impact and abrasion resistance of LTS materials “far exceed those of concrete and natural stone,” according to the company.
~ Green: Solidia removes landfill waste by using recycled products as raw materials. Plus, LTS-constructed stone and plastic have insulating properties that can help cut energy costs.
~ Carbon Negative: Instead of blasting greenhouse gases into the atmosphere to construct building materials, Solidia’s approach actually removes carbon from the atmosphere and uses it as an ingredient in the formation process.
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At present, the materials can be used for floor and wall tiles, countertops and building facades. But since LTS can generate useable materials in mere hours – and in whatever form factor is necessary – it’s capable of replacing concrete, too.
It could one day provide more efficient building blocks for skyscrapers, bridges, highway medians, or even homes.
And that’s not the best part…
High Tech Roads on the Way
Since LTS works under low-temperature conditions, it opens up the possibility to install sensors or other electronic gizmos throughout the material.
As for what that means in the future, the sky’s the limit.
Personally, I’m looking forward to seeing roof tiles with built-in solar cells, roads that charge electric cars on the move, or sensors that heat up your driveway after a heavy snowfall.
The potential has industry professionals excited, too. Architect Rick Cook – who designed New York City’s first LEED Platinum (i.e. – ultra green) building – says, “As architects designing for a sustainable future, we are seeking new products that are not just qualitatively better, but radically address our carbon footprint. I believe Solidia Technologies has developed such a material.”
And it shouldn’t be long before architects can start working with these materials, since Solidia recently teamed up with international equipment maker, SIMEC. Together, they plan to develop production lines to pump out LTS building materials and commercialize the breakthrough on a global scale.
Solidia also plans to license the technology to construction companies to take advantage of their established distribution channels, as well.
As always, we’ll keep an eye out for any upcoming agreements – and ways to profit – as they unfold.