Tucson, Arizona – There is a substance that we interact with every single day and is directly responsible for 5% of man-made emissions worldwide. It has remained virtually under the radar and underneath us. We know this major pollutant as cement.
For every ton of cement produced, an equivalent ton of carbon dioxide is released into our atmosphere. With 4 billion tons of cement being produced every year, it is definitely time to find an environmentally friendly solution. One student from the University of Arizona may have the answer.
The Ph.D. student fittingly named, David Stone, was first officially recognized for creating the Eco-friendly alternative to cement in an Arizona innovation completion in 2013. Stone’s invention is called Ferrock, which is primarily made of waste steel dust. The dust is normally thrown away, eventually ending up in the landfill.
Last year, Stone was issued a patent for Ferrock and the invention has turned out to be much better than cement. Besides the fact it is made of recycled materials, it is much stronger than cement. Tests have confirmed it is much harder to crack Ferrock because it has more flexibility. Experts are speculating it would be ideal in areas that are subjected to earthquakes and other natural disasters.
Where Ferrock really differs from its competition is that concrete can be melted back into liquid state. This may seem like a negative, but really just showcases the weakness of concrete. When Ferrock hardens, it enters into solid rock state, which cannot be reversed. It will provide more stability and less needs for repairs.
Could this product be any more environmentally friendly? Yes.
In order for Ferrock to harden it needs to be exposed to high concentrations levels of carbon dioxide. Ferrock is carbon negative, but it is still unclear how much CO2 can be absorbed. However it is estimated that it will be able to soak up in the neighborhood of 1% more than it creates.
Even with tremendous upside, Ferrock faces an uphill battle. Currently the cement market is dominated by Portland Cement. It has even been referred to as the most important material in the world for its versatile applications and creation of our roadways. Cement is used more than every other building material such as brick, stone, steel, wood, etc. combined.
And what if steel producers begin charging for their “waste”?
After almost 12 years in the works, Ferrock is finally ready to revolutionize the construction industry. Recently Stone started a company called Iron Shell to commercialize the invention. This will be one of the final steps before Ferrock is available for public consumption.
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When concrete cracks, it is difficult to mend and is often very unsightly. Often the old concrete will need to be replaced. The concrete waste will need to be put into a dumpster to be transported to the landfill. This is a vicious cycle that continually hurts the environment. If you plan on replacing your concrete with Ferrock, contact Budget Dumpster, so we can help you dispose of the old concrete.