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2020 / 2021 Edition

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Researchers seek inspiration

 

"RESEARCHERS looking into the potential uses of surplus quarry fines are calling on local authorities for some much-needed inspiration. The generation of surplus dust is a common occurrence at most quarries throughout the UK and, while some of this material manages to find uses, a large proportion of it ends up as slow-moving stockpiled by-product."

"In an effort to reduce this problem, the University of Birmingham has been undertaking research into the classification and utilization of surplus dust for the past 18 months. The research, which is funded by Entrust, is focusing on materials from five different quarries."

"Classification analysis has shown the fines to be uncontaminated and of consistent quality, and as such they are useable materials. A number of applications are already under development, however the researchers say plenty of scope remains for further ideas to be progressed."

"Project manager Dr Gurmel Ghataora, from the university’s School of Engineering, says the research team would particularly welcome the opportunity to work with local authorities with an interest in using secondary fines to help meet their Agenda 21 sustainability targets."

"‘There is considerable scope for local authorities to consider using secondary materials in existing applications, for example, replacing fill materials in sand bags."

‘We would welcome any suggestions about large- or small-scale use of this material and the opportunity to undertake trials.’ 

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