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EU makes bricks out of recycled plastics

It has worked with the Latvian Technological Centre; the Institute of Polymer Mechanics, the University of Latvia; and Spanish company Hormigones Uniland to mix waste polymers with other materials to make construction products.

The Latvian researchers have developed a technique to turn thermoplastic polymer waste into a binding substance which could be mixed with other materials such as sand to produce polymer concrete products without using cement.

The polymer concrete bricks look like ordinary bricks made from cement, said Juris Balodis, project manager at Latvian Technological Centre. But this polymer concrete absorbs less water so it is very good for resisting temperature variations like freezing. It is ideal for outdoor use like street furniture and making borders on streets.

His team is currently trying to speed production from three bricks-a-minute to 30 to 60.

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