Industry

08 JAN 2020

UNIVERSITY PROFESSOR LAUNCHES ‘WORLD-FIRST’ RECYCLED BRICK

A university professor has launched what is claimed to be the world’s first building brick made from 90% recycled construction and demolition waste, which she hopes will help support the sustainability ambitions of today’s construction industry.

The K-Briq is claimed to produce just a tenth of the CO2 emissions of a traditional fired brick, is said to use less than a tenth of the energy in its manufacture, and can be made in any colour.

Incubated at Heriot-Watt University and now the first product from clean tech spin-out, Kenoteq Ltd, the new company was featured on BBC’s The One Show earlier this week.

Professor Gabriela Medero, who conceived the idea of the K-Briq more than 10 years ago, said: “We hope K-Briq will help support the sustainability ambitions of today’s construction industry. I have spent many years researching building materials and have been concerned that modern construction techniques exploit raw materials without considering that they are amongst the largest contributors to carbon emissions. The amount of waste they produce is not sustainable long-term. 

“The K-Briq looks like a normal brick, weighs the same and behaves like a clay brick but offers better insulation properties. It is sustainable and not kiln-fired so it is far better for the environment and represents massive savings for the construction industry in terms of related taxes.”

Dr Sam Chapman, who works in close partnership with Professor Medero on Kenoteq, added: “Kenoteq has invested in machinery that can produce three million bricks per year. In the past year, we’ve produced thousands of bricks and put them through rigorous testing with the K-Briq now commercially available to construction clients. The Scottish government has set very high targets for housebuilding with 50,000 new homes earmarked for construction in the next three years. We hope Kenoteq will be part of those homes.”

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