TAD News Desk, Chennai: IIT Madras Researchers joined hands with Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), U.S., to build up a new model to develop productive usage of agriculture and industrial waste like biomass ash, scrap metals etc. This project is going to be a big step towards a sustainable future by utilizing vast amounts of waste materials. This waste can be used for designing building materials having lower costs and an impact on the environment.
Prof. Ravindra Gettu and Dr Piyush Chaunsali, Department of civil engineering, IIT Madras are going to lead this initiative with Dr Elsa A. Olivetti, Atlantic Richfield Associate Professor of Energy Studies, MIT. SPARC (Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration) Initiative of the Ministry of Education has got the undertaking of this project.
Talking about this research, Dr Piyush Chaunsali said, “A unique aspect of this Research Project is while there has been limited utilization of waste and by-products in structural materials such as concrete, this project aims at developing a novel framework for high-volume utilization of industrial by-products in alternative cementitious binders.”
Elaborating on this project, Dr Elsa A. Olivetti said, “This SPARC project is about developing new, more sustainable cements and cement binders. Cement concretes are some of the most widely used materials on the planet and so, they have a big environmental impact because we need so much of them and the processes that we use to make them have significant environmental impact.”
Dr Elsa A. Olivetti further elaborates “In particular, we are trying to use industrial waste materials to make new cement binders so that we could have more sustainable materials. We want to think about various regions of India and what waste materials are available and how might they be used to make new cements that would have lower environmental footprint than the current building materials that are being used.”
Prof. Olivetti visited IIT Madras during January 2020, and then Prof. Ravindra visited MIT in February 2020. Research papers and plans were being discussed during these visits. Faculty and students of IIT, Madras and MIT are also involved with this project.
Main objectives of this project:
- Assessment of availability of agricultural and industrial by-products.
- Find out new energy-efficient ways for utilization of agricultural waste in cement binders.
- Calculate the environmental sustainability of these cementitious binders.
- Develop ways for high volume utilization of waste material in infrastructure.
Industrial by-products like dirt and gravel, masonry, ash, concrete and scrap metal mostly go waste due to their complex characteristics. This project aims to make their utilization in constructing roads, flyovers, buildings in an efficient manner.