“Plastic is always valuable,” says Nzambi Matee of the mountains of discarded oil cans, washing buckets, yogurt scraps and other rubbish cut into the colored rubbish at his workshop. Nairobi.
“I believe plastic is one of the most misunderstood things.”
The 30 -year -old Kenyan engineer and developer is seeing: his start -up to recycle tonnes of plastic trapped in bricks that are stronger, smaller and lighter than a brush.
By itself, these paving blocks can line streets, highways and sidewalks in Nairobi, but can quickly become an alternative builder for low -rise buildings.
Every day his job, Gjeng Makers, is to remove 1,500 bricks made from the industry and building mortar to be dumped in the city’s rubbish dumps.
The young man quit his oil and gas business – the industry that makes plastic from fossil fuels – to seek recycling after worrying about how little waste was reused. Ia.
“In Nairobi we produce about 500 metric tonnes of plastic waste every day, and only a fraction of that is recycled,” said Matee, who is hooked on energy and around the floor of the workshop are denim clothing and accessories.
“And think to me – what’s the effect of this plastic?”
Stronger, lighter, better
Most winds in the islands, rivers and oceans, and less than 10 percent renewable.
In Nairobi, one of Africa’s fastest -growing cities, Matee has an endless supply of eyewear to work with, looking for city advice and business locations for the desired plastic. zero.
It took a few years to prepare a prototype – the required machine was already in place and built from different parts of the industry – but by 2019 work continued.
The cut plastic is mixed with sand and placed over high heat, creating a sludge that is melted into different pieces.
The end result is a paver between two and seven times stronger than a car, half the weight, and about 15 percent better, Matee said.
It’s much longer.
Plastic is fibrous in nature, and an independent process prevents air bags from forming in the clay bricks. This has a higher reducing strength than conventional paving stones that will crack under high force or exposure over a long period of time.
“So it won’t break,” Matee said, slamming two of the boulders into each other.
By 2021, they will produce another 50 tonnes of plastic but Matee expects to double that amount each year as production increases.
There are limits.
Of the seven major types of plastic, only four can be recycled into rocks.
PET plastic – the type used in plastic bottles and which is very harmful to the environment – is not suitable at the moment, but they plan to change that.
“There’s more that can be done, there’s more that needs to be done. We’re just one drop in the ocean … small, small droplets do a lot. and, “said Matee.
They are trying to break into the retail market by designing a block that can be converted and filled with bricks, mortar and standard building materials.
A prototype is underway, with plans to build a model house by the end of the year.
“We want to be a leader in other household products. Our first priority is plastic,” says Matee.
His trailblazing work was hailed, and he got a new boost earlier this year after he designed a standard gavel for a major UN organization where the plastic waste problem grew on the agenda.
Gjeng Makers has also created over 100 direct and indirect projects through the recycling of plastic – helping the environment and the environment in a way that Matee said could not be done with fossil fuels.
“Let’s just say I slept well,” she said with a laugh.
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© 2022 AFP
Directions: ‘Garbage has value’: Kenyan manufacturer turns plastic into clay bricks (2022, March 29) Retrieved 29 March 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-03 -trash-kenyan-inventor-plastic-bricks.html
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