Biomaterial made from sand that could replace energy-intensive concrete.
Peter Trimble is a graduate from the University of Edinburgh who wants to find a way to create new materials without resorting to common “heat beat and treat” techniques that result in 96% waste and 4% product. “Dupe” is a microbially induced casting procedure that uses sand and urea to create granular building materials that can be shaped into useful objects.
Even though the biomaterial has a structure comparable to concrete, its production produces no greenhouse gases. Because concrete is responsible for 5% of the world’s manmade CO2 emissions, the biomaterial could be an important stepping stone towards reduced carbon emissions around the world.
Apart from reduced CO2 emissions, Dupe is also inexpensive because it relies on sand and urea, both cheap and abundant raw materials that can be access globally. Trimble hopes to question the sustainability of industrial manufacturing and encourage fresh thinking to try and develop better alternatives.