Both energy and materials are precious resources to be used wisely. Around 500 million ton of Construction and Demolition Waste (C&DW) are generated every year in EU28, the predominant fraction (50%) being concrete. Concrete is indeed the most used construction material thanks to its mechanical and physical properties, the large availability of raw materials at local level and its competitiveness in the market.
Over the last years, novel technology has been developed aiming to guarantee high quality recycled concrete aggregates for use in new concrete, thereby closing the concrete loop. The most advanced concrete recycling technologies currently produce coarse (>4mm) recycled concrete aggregates by removing cement paste from the surface of the aggregates; however, the fine (0-4 mm) fraction, ca. 40% of the concrete waste, still faces technical barriers to be incorporated into new concrete.
At the other extreme, there are minor (e.g. glass) and emerging (e.g. mineral wool) C&DW materials, currently accounting for 0.7% of the total, but revealing growing rates as consequence of European regulations. Those emerging C&DW streams have not yet found technological and business solutions, being mostly landfilled.
Aiming at facing these challenges, VEEP main objective is to eco-design, develop and demonstrate new cost-effective technological solutions that will lead to novel closed-loop circular approaches for C&DW recycling into novel multilayer precast concrete elements (for both new buildings and refurbishment) incorporating new concretes as well as superinsulation material produced by using at least 75% (by weight) of C&DW recycled materials.
The 1st international VEEP workshop is organised at the very beginning of the project (month 7, for a duration of 4 years) to engage with relevant stakeholders and steer together the research to be performed. All managers know that every mistake made at the beginning of a project (conception and design) are multiplied by a “X factor” during its execution. This open-minded approach presents a double advantage, both for the research community and the VEEP partners.
On one side, relevant stakeholders can really be involved in the project as from the very beginning. By creating mutual confidence, both VEEP partners and experts can openly exchange ideas in view of achieving concrete results.
On the other side, VEEP partners can take profit from the experience of external people and institutions acting in the field of energy and resource efficiency for an easier achievement of the project objectives.
The workshop is organized in cooperation with the BIBM Congress, the biggest event of the European precast concrete industry, taking place every three years. The objective is to realise early synergies between the research world on one side, and the industrial and market implementer world on the other. At the end of the workshop, it will be possible to attend the “Welcome reception” in the exhibition area of the BIBM congress.