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Characterisation of Mineral Wastes, Resources and Processing Technologies - Integrated Waste Management for the Production of Construction Material - WR0115

The project undertook applied research to develop a screening protocol, and completed the production of a 'Waste - Product Pairing Database' (WPP Database) for a variety of mineral wastes for use in (predominantly 5) construction product sectors. The project deliverables help stakeholders to evaluate:

- Issues of geographical distribution,
- The level of specific information required to allow waste producers to engage with particular product manufacturing sectors.
- Provide at `strategic` level, generic information to inform planning, policy, strategy and initiatives aimed at stimulating waste utilisation.
- The required level of detail at the `implementation` level (i.e. utilising waste)

The project partners were:

- Mineral Industry Research Organisation (MIRO)
- The Building Research Establishment (BRE)
- The University of Leeds, School of Civil Engineering
- Akristos Ltd
- National industrial Symbiosis Programme (NISP)
The overall aim of the project was to undertake applied research to develop a characterisation screening protocol, and compile and complete a characterisation matrix for mineral waste in order to establish ‘fitness for purpose’. A further aim was to enable the large volumes of mineral waste that are well suited for incorporation into construction products to be identified. Specific Objectives are listed below. As the project progressed, it became clear that some objectives needed to be revised (e.g. obtaining volumes of mineral wastes was commercially sensitive, so Objective 5 had to be adjusted). These variations are also shown below. In addition the WPP Database has also been provided as a web based tool.


1. To collect benchmarking data across a broad range of mineral-based wastes from all stages in the material cycle: from extraction through to end of life. - tonnes per annum (tpa). (Unchanged)

2. To collect benchmarking data across a limited range of traditional and emerging mineral-based construction products. - market value £’s/tpa. (Unchanged)

3. To develop & define a characterisation matrix for approximately 20 ‘mineral waste : construction product’ pairings (for e.g. dredged silt : brick). Refine the matrix by piloting 6 – 8 pairs, in order to allow fit for purpose characterisation of the pairings to be assessed.

CHANGED TO: Development of a characterisation matrix for waste-product pairings for five Construction product sector

4. To conduct wider characterisation trials and generate new data on fitness for purpose of the 20 waste : product pairings, combine this data with that currently available, and to measure this data set and its application by converting data into 5-10 waste utilisation scenarios that will then be reviewed by selected stakeholders.

CHANGED TO: Produce 5 Industry Sector Reviews and 15 waste-product Case Studies.

5. To develop a Geographical Information System that integrates with BREMAP (current GIS system that covers construction and demolition waste only), to display characterisation data, processing plant location and volumes for mineral wastes.

CHANGED: No qualitative data on GIS - but there are links to enable companies to post relevant information

6. To critically assess, in conjunction with stakeholder groups, the relationship between material characterisation data and level of process knowledge needed for pre-commercial viability, and to develop case studies using three empirical trials on emerging process technology, in order to provide an understanding of how a given waste stream may re-enter the chain of utility.

CHANGED TO: Production of a desk based review outlining the links between processing technology and the 5 industrial sectors

7. To produce a final project report including recommendations identifying where the greatest returns for stakeholders are to be gained. (avoided ‘disposal costs &/or reduced ‘virgin’ material consumption &/or recycled content in product). (Unchanged)

8. To hold an ‘updated’ BREMAP launch event. (Unchanged).

Project Documents
• Final Report - Annex : Cement sector study   (665k)
• Final Report - Annex : Ceramic sector study   (259k)
• Final Report - Annex : Concrete sector study   (378k)
• Final Report - Annex : Manufactured Aggregates Sector Study   (321k)
• Final Report - Annex : Mineral Wool Sector Study   (151k)
• Final Report - SID5 : Characterisation of mineral wastes, resources and processing technologies: integrated waste management for construction material   (356k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2005

To: 2007

Cost: £260,204
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Mineral Industry Research Organisation (MIRO)
Encourage change in resource use/waste generation              
Environmental Protection              
Establishing a sound database for waste management              
Process Technology              
Sustainable Consumption and Production              
Sustainable Resource Consumption and Management              
Waste Management              
Fields of Study
Waste Management