Biochar Makes Concrete Stronger and More Watertight

Apr 12, 2018

A team of researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) has developed a novel new method to recycle wood waste [as biochar] by incorporating it into cement and mortar mixtures, making the resulting materials both stronger and more watertight.

In just one year, furniture factories in Singapore can produce over half a million tonnes of wood waste. This waste primarily takes the form of sawdust, and a positive way to recycle this waste is to turn it into biochar, a charcoal-like substance.

Biochar has a variety of environmental benefits. While most biomass breaks down within 10 or 20 years, releasing its carbon into the atmosphere, biochar is an incredibly stable material and able to hold its carbon for thousands of years.

A 2010 study found that increasing the global production of biochar could offset over 10 percent of the world’s human-caused greenhouse gas emissions. Due to its strong water absorption and retention capacity, biochar also is known to be a wonderful soil enricher.

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