Geopolymer Concrete in the Spotlight

20th August 2019

News Outlets from all over the country have taken an interest in Sydney’s World-First Geopolymer Concrete trials.

Culminating from seven (7) years of hard work through the Cooperative Research Centre for Low Carbon Living, in June 2019 the Sydney City Council along with the Australasian (iron & steel) Slag Association, Ash Development Association of Australia, University of NSW and Wagners Concrete worked together to design, manufacturer and lay a trail pavement made from Geopolymer Concrete in a busy street of Sydney. 

This project was another great example of the research together with UNSW and the Cooperative Research Centre for Low Carbon Living, which saw the concrete laid to undergo 5 years of testing against regular concrete laid as a control. 

Embedded in the geopolymer concrete are nine sensors, which will be continually monitored in addition to visual testing for any impairments. The data will be used to help create the first set of industry guidelines for the new low emissions product which utilises industrial bi-products from coal-fired power stations and steel production, requiring less energy to process. 

According to Dr. Tommy Wiedmann, Associate Professor of Sustainability Research at UNSW, Geopolymer Concrete could potentially save 12,000 kilotonnes of CO2 a year if it was widely adopted, as it currently only generates 300kg of CO2 per tonne, just a third of the carbon output from traditional cement production. Near 70% of the concrete produced today is for the creation of pavements and footpaths, and with the utilisation of geopolymer concrete for such projects, Lord Mayor of Sydney says that the use of recycled materials is essential to reduce waste output.

“We’re continually working with concrete suppliers to reduce the amount of pollution and greenhouse gases emitted during the production of concrete for our local roads, and we already use sustainable green concrete for all our footway renewal works – which adds up to 25,000m2 per year,” she said.

Moore said the move was part of the city’s broader bid to reduce their carbon footprint after being named Australia’s first carbon-neutral local council.  Read more about the project and watch a short video click on the following link:​​.