Get more clean fractions when you recycle construction waste

We have created several new recycling solutions for construction waste. By adding water baths, wind shifter and eddy current magnets to our mobile construction waste recycling facilities, we can sort and recycle large amounts of waste from the construction industry. The waste becomes new products that can be recycled directly on site or sold on. Using our proprietary machines, we can separate materials such as plastics, metals, wood and inert materials.

What is construction waste?

Construction waste is the waste generated at demolition and construction sites. Examples of construction waste include materials such as waste wood, frames, doors, chipboard, plastics, metals, glass and concrete.

Waste needs to be sorted and separated in order to be recycled, reused or used for energy recovery. The construction sector currently accounts for about a third of all waste generated in Sweden and a quarter of all hazardous waste (excluding mining waste), according to the Ministry of the Environment. One measure proposed is to introduce a requirement for source separation of construction and demolition waste.

Recycling solutions for the construction industry

Norditek has worked on several projects to develop waste management technology, including with the company Ragn-Sells, which offers various construction waste services.

The common purpose of such cooperation is to make new products from the waste that can be introduced back into society. In all projects we work on, we are interested in developing the technology to separate materials more efficiently and thus benefit customers and society. Two examples of materials we can currently recycle more efficiently are metals and plastics.

Plastics and metals in construction waste

Plastic contained in unsorted construction waste can now be separated by adding wind and simply blowing away the plastic. This makes it possible to obtain a fossil-free fuel consisting of wood. In such a process, other forces can also be added, for example to separate metal using magnets.

The metal is found in taps, pipes, brass handles and much more. Metal that is magnetic is relatively easy to recycle while non-magnetic metal is more difficult to separate from the waste. This is where our technology comes in. With our eddy current magnet, all metal from old buildings can be separated and recycled, both before the waste is burned in a boiler but also after.

Sorting of construction waste

Construction waste is a growing problem in the construction industry. The waste currently occupies a significant part of the total landfill space and some materials can take up to 1,000 years to decompose. 

Basically, there are three different processes for recycling construction waste: sorting, recycling and reuse. Sorting is the most important step in the recycling of construction waste. This process involves separating materials according to their properties, such as metal, plastic and wood. Doing this makes it easier to recycle or reuse the materials.

In the case of heating plants, sorting should therefore take place before the material is fired in order to recover a material with better properties. However, it is possible to recover, for example, metal even after firing, by refining the residual slag ash.

Recycling is the next step in the construction waste process and involves processing the separated material and creating new materials. Processing can include, for example, melting down. Processing takes place when the material cannot be reused directly.

Reuse is the final step and involves using recycled materials to make new construction products. Through these processes, we can recover a lot of waste and help reduce landfill space. Construction companies that apply these processes become more sustainable and environmentally friendly. Norditek therefore encourages all construction companies to start recycling their waste with the technical solutions available on the market today.

Material inventory

It is important to mention that in addition to sorting requirements, there may also be higher requirements for measures to prevent construction waste. This involves making an inventory of the material prior to construction or demolition activities.

This is a prerequisite for the prevention of waste according to the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency and thus for the safe management of construction and demolition waste. A material inventory identifies construction products that can be reused and the types of waste that may arise during demolition, including hazardous substances in materials and components.

While society is increasing the demands on sorting and planning, we at Norditek look to develop the technology for more efficient recycling. We already have many facilities on the market that separate and recycle waste from the construction industry.

Norditek 2021

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