Innovation makes sustainable practices profitable for building materials industry.
Solidia Technologies announced today that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued a patent that will offer the global construction and materials industry a way to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the production of cement and provide concrete manufacturers a sustainable way to make concrete that is stronger, cheaper to produce and faster to cure.
In U.S. Patent No. 9,095,815, "Systems and Methods for Capture and Sequestration of Gases and Compositions Derived Therefrom," a process of creating a solid ceramic form by requisitioning greenhouse gases with a chemical, non-hydraulic bond is described. This innovation, when applied to concrete, drastically reduces reaction time for hardening, because the concrete does not need to cure over a period of weeks. This is an innovative departure from common production practice in the concrete industry, where traditional concrete products require up to 28 days of curing time.
"We have worked to develop a way to make a very complex technology simple and easy to adopt by providing the construction and building materials industries a real competitive edge, with immediate cost savings, superior performance, and an enhanced sustainability profile," said Solidia President and CEO Tom Schuler.
This patent represents the final piece of the intellectual property package developed in 2007 at Rutgers University by co-inventors Richard (Rik) Riman, Rutgers distinguished professor of materials science and engineering, and Vahit Atakan, Solidia’s R&D director and former Rutgers graduate student and research associate. The patents were licensed to Solidia Technologies in 2008.
Solidia’s patented technologies start with sustainable Solidia Cement and cure concrete with CO2 instead of water, reducing carbon emissions up to 70 percent and recycling 60-100 percent of the water used in production. Targeting the estimated US$1 trillion concrete and US$300 billion cement markets, Solidia’s patented processes offer manufacturers significant cost savings compared to water-based curing of conventional cement based on faster curing times, lower energy and raw material consumption, reduced waste generation, and reduced labor requirements.
Currently in commercialization for large and small-scale applications, Solidia’s R&D collaborators include LafargeHolcim, The Linde Group, CDS Group, DOT’s Federal Highway Administration, DOE’s National Energy Technology Laboratory, the EPA, Rutgers University, Purdue University, Ohio University, and the University of South Florida These collaborative efforts include applied research, materials testing and characterization, manufacturing logistics, general marketing and R&D funding. For over 50 years, scientists have tried to cure concrete with CO2 knowing the resulting product would be stronger and more stable. Solidia Technologies is the first to make this commercially viable.
In late 2014, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KCPB), Bright Capital, BASF, and BP recommitted to Solidia and were joined in the U.S. start-up’s Series C Round by LafargeHolcim, Total Energy Ventures, Bill Joy and other private investors.