Get the awesome construction innovation content in your inbox every week

Give it a try—it only takes a click to unsubscribe.

Sustainability

Smart Construction Materials: Foam Glass Gravel

Candy Lebby
by Candy Lebby on May 30, 2018

Recycling is a great way to have a positive impact on the environment! These days we recycle everything from clothing, to furniture- even our unused food needn’t go to waste these days. When its comes to the construction industry, recycling is encouraged especially since so many materials are used. Salvaging and recycling various materials are many of the innovative ways in which the construction industry contributes towards a sustainable future.

"Salvaging and recycling various materials are many of the innovative ways in which the construction industry contributes towards a sustainable future"

Glass waste can be used in many different ways and transformed into some intriguing things. After being sorted and treated depending on its size and colour, it is then crushed or melted before being moulded into something entirely new. In the case of foam glass, it is used as a sustainable replacement for the more traditional building materials.

"Foam glass, is used as a sustainable replacement for the more traditional building materials"

The name of this innovative material is foam glass gravel. It is versatile and made of a lightweight material, perfect for multiple uses within different spaces and structures. It may be a fairly new building material to the construction market, but it has grown popular seemingly overnight thanks to its safe, stable and environmentally friendly properties. 

foam glass gravel for foundations insulation[Photo Credit: Tectonica]

"It is versatile and made of a lightweight material, perfect for multiple uses within different spaces and structures"

Foam glass can be used in limecrete floors, becoming a firm favourite due to its easy application. It can also be used in the building of dams, in multi storey buildings and even in the insulation of district heating pipes. 

The impressive thing about foam glass gravel is that it does the same job as traditional gravel but does the job while being kind to the environment. What’s not to love? 

So now we know what glass gravel can be used for and its benefits. But how is it made? How do we turn glass waste into something that can used so productively?

Production of foam glass gravelPhoto Credit: SGG Consulting]

 "It does the same job as traditional gravel but does the job while being kind to the environment"

Geocell are well-known manufacturers of gravel glass and they have a technique which involved breaking glass into a fine powder, mixing it with natural foaming agents and then heating it up in a huge oven.

Once the glass has cooled down, it can finally be broken off into the foam glass aggregate. And voila! Our finished product which is now ready to use in all its sustainable, durable glory. 

Ice rink using foam glass Photo Credit: Geocell]

Learning about the ways foam glass gravel can be used in construction is something that interests us here at Bobtrade. In fact, we recently found out that an outdoor ice skating rink is being built in Schierke, Germany using this very material!

Who knows what will be next? Perhaps we’ll be using it underneath our flooring here at our offices at Bobtrade in the future. We’ll let you know if we do!

If you enjoyed reading our article on sustainability in construction you should check out Self-Healing Concrete, Foam Glass Gravel, and Living Walls and Bioactive Concrete

We'd be interested to know what you think about these eco-friendly options so head on down to our forum where the bigger conversation is taking place! 

Tags: Sustainability

AUTHOR
Candy Lebby

Candy Lebby

Content Writer Executive at Bobtrade , relishes in learning about the innovative technology in the construction industry , mama to my beautiful 4 year old, Benjamin, blogger and video games enthusiast.!