Usurbil, Basque Country -- The massive production of tyres and the difficulties in disposing of them after use has been one of the most serious environmental problems worldwide in recent years. The European project Ekopan is seeking to address the existing problems by re-using tyres in the manufacture of an ordinary construction element like roadway noise barriers. This project is in line with the principles laid down in the current European Parliament Directive (Directive 2006/12/EC) on waste, in which the upcycling and use of waste as raw materials are encouraged in order to preserve natural resources.
|Foto: Rainer Sturm/Pixelio|
Specifically, the Ekopan project is setting out to fill the gap between the development of the acoustic panel (carried out in a previous research project) and the mass production and marketing phase. So it is focussing on optimizing the manufacturing process on an industrial scale, validating the mechanical and acoustic properties, and conducting a market study that will facilitate the penetration of the new product.
The European Ekopan project has a 24-month duration and is partly funded by the European Union within the CIP Eco-innovation Programme. Participating in it are an R+D centre: Tecnalia (Spain); a company with over 50-years’ experience in the manufacture of concrete products: Norten Prefabricados de Hormigón (Spain); and a firm of consultants specialising in environmental expertise: GEONARDO Environment Technologies (Hungary). Quelle: Basque Research/ Elhuyar Fundazioa