Joining forces with partners The Loop Factory, LINK Arkitektur, DECIBEL by Johanson, LogTrade Technology, and Lund University the aim is to demonstrate a circular value chain and new resource-efficient manufacturing technologies within the construction and demolition industry.
The consortium has started the project initiative ReFAB - Design of circular and resource-efficient processes and products for recycled glass wool, supported by Vinnova, the Swedish Innovation Agency.
Today the construction and demolition industry still represent one of the biggest waste streams in Europe, contributing about a third of total waste generated. Thus, the waste directive was put in place, and the waste hierarchy was introduced to guide efforts towards a circular approach to materials and products. The ReFAB project address several points in the hierarchy, aiming to build a circular system that will last over time.
The focus is to utilise acoustic wall and ceiling absorbers made of glass wool, a complex waste stream from the construction and demolition industry. This with the use of new, more effective manufacturing technologies and design strategies which will enable high-value products on the market.
“This collaboration is a fantastic opportunity to challenge how recycled materials can be upgraded into high value products and how new technologies along the value chain can enable the transformation into a more resource efficient society”, says Anna Altner, Founder of The Loop Factory.
The project takes a holistic approach to the circular topic, and therefore the consortium includes partners not only from the supplier side, but also from the market and supply chain areas. The project group hopes the project results and even structure can inspire others.
“Changing an industry is nothing you do as a lone actor – it must be done together”, says Ola Karlsson, Research & Development and Innovation Director at Saint-Gobain Ecophon. “Collaborating across industry lines and learning from each other will be the foundation of a sustainable circular system, and a key factor of success in moving away from the current linear system”.