The UBU manufactures a sustainable cobble from industrial waste

Researchers from the University of Burgos have patented an eco-cobble made from waste from the automobile industry

The automobile and construction industries are two of the most relevant in Europe, generating around 20 and 14 million jobs, respectively. The search for methods that allow the use of waste generated in both industries has been gaining momentum in recent years.

In this context, the research group Building Engineering ( GIIE ) has developed a construction material from the insulating waste of car roofs. In this way, the use of waste from the automotive industry is achieved to reintroduce it into the construction sector, thus contributing to the circular economy.

The material obtained from automobiles is mainly made up of polyurethane, although it also has other components such as adhesives, metal oxides, remains of paint, etc. The main advantage offered by the method designed by the team led by Professor Verónica Calderón Carpintero is that it is not necessary to separate the waste components, significantly facilitating the process.

The formed eco-cobble meets current regulations, being suitable for use in construction and civil engineering. In addition, this material is lighter (weight reduction of up to 13% compared to pavers without residue), and manages to maintain and even improve several of the mechanical properties of the final material.

Given the interest aroused by this type of material, researchers from the University of Burgos, in collaboration with the KTO, have requested a utility model to protect their invention (U202231488).

In recent years, the GIIE research group has developed a wide variety of procedures in the field of sustainable construction, which allow the use of waste from different industries. Materials developed by this group take into account energy efficiency and life cycle analysis, becoming a benchmark.