Researchers in Barcelona, Spain have found an innovative solution to the long-established emissions problem.
In Barcelona, Spain, researchers at Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC) have found an innovative solution to the long-established emissions problem. Science Daily reports that they discovered how to build megastructures with a biological concrete that not only lowers CO2 and regulates heat, but is pleasing to look at.
It is not only a medium for growth and a construction material, but a means to regulate temperatures indoors while removing CO2 from the atmosphere. The surface of the concrete grows mosses, lichens, fungi and other biological organisms.
The invention needs to be used in regions with a calm Mediterranean climate, but enables buildings to absorb CO2 and release oxygen with micro-algae and other “pigmented microorganisms” that coat it.
While vertical gardens certainly enhance its aesthetic appeal, one might declare that its beauty is sourced in its clever design.
The concrete works in layers: The top layer absorbs and stores rainwater and grows the microorganism underneath; it can also absorb solar radiation, which insulates the building and regulates temperatures for those who live inside. The final layer of the concrete repels water to keep the internal structure safe, shares Inhabitat.
Normal concrete has high pH levels that don’t allow plants to grow, but this newly developed one is more acidic, which lowers the pH to levels safer for growth.
The research team, led by Antonio Aguado and supported by Ignacio Segura and Sandra Manso, has big plans for the design. They share on UPC’s website:
“A further aim is that the appearance of the façades constructed with the new material should evolve over time, showing changes of colour according to the time of year.”