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Research projects

Valorization of landfill and surface material in a circular economy

About this project

Project information

Project status

In progress 2019 - 2021


Frans Prenkert

Research subject

Research environments

Excavated soil and demolition material are underused resources in the construction industry that cause increased transportation and climate gas emissions. The sector is currently characterized by a linear economy of ”take, make and dispose” which hampers the transition to circular material systems. Regulations contribute to actors preferring virgin rock material rather than upgrading excavation material for the same application.

The project will demonstrate that wet separation can produce ballast at the same environmental and technical quality as quarry material. The link between the quality of the raw material (soil or demolition material) and the product (ballast) will be established. Capacity, volume, quality, energy demand, CO2-emissions etc. at production will be monitored. Quality assurance and traceability is crucial for replacing virgin quarry material with circular material. A blue print will be made for an app for quality assurance and traceability that will be built during step 3.

Three building contractors will test replacing ballast from quarries with wet separated ballast at three sites. The production of ballast will be planned and controlled using the Optimass-tool which will be extended and improved.

A circular economy linked to the valorization will be studied and a pricing model for establishing a wet sifting plant will be developed. Subconscious norms within the construction industry and within environmental authorities will be highlighted and the partners will improve their norm reflexive ability and equality awareness. The project aims at spreading the results to site developers and environmental authorities, host a Nordic conference and initiate Nordic cooperation in this field.

The project is financed within the scope of Vinnova's funding form for Challenge-Driven Innovation (CDI).

Research funding bodies

  • Vinnova