Tyres are among the most problematic sources of waste because they are designed to resist destruction. It was this problem that prompted a student of Caledonian College of Engineering (CCE) to come up with a way of using discarded tyres in the construction sector. Fatma Sulaiman Nasser al Kindi, a chemical engineering student at CCE, said that discarded tyres are an environmental hazard.
Omani Student Puts Forward Use of Tyre Material in Concrete
“I was thinking on how to make the best use of discarded tyres. I have noticed such tyres being dumped in open areas leading to pollution in the environment. I embarked on the project of recycling tyre waste particles into concrete aggregate by acid treatment and activation process,” Fatma said .
Fatma said that the project is considered as an alternative to the natural aggregates used as filler in concrete. “Waste tyres will be converted into small pieces and mixed with concrete mixture for construction work as well as providing raw material to different industries.”
In an effort to improve the durability and resilience of concrete, researchers have attempted to use recycled rubber within concrete mixes. The result of this has been positive as it has extended the lifespan of concrete structures, roads and bridges.
Fatma said rubber tyres act as a binding agent. “The biggest benefit is that it reduces the possibility of development of cracks in concrete structures, roads or bridges. It helps to strengthen the quality of a structure.”
It is noted that previous studies have shown that the hydrophobic nature of rubber poses a challenge in using tyre chip as an aggregate.