Four engineering projects to develop new lightweight materials, design products to have a longer life and be more easily recyclable, and to clean contaminated land to reclaim valuable metals, have been announced by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.
In July EPSRC brought together academics from a number of disciplines for a collaborative, five-day event known as a ‘sandpit’. They examined the resource challenges and came up with research projects that could develop long-term sustainable solutions.
Professor David Delpy, EPSRC’s chief executive said: “Finding answers to complex problems such as how to manage our resources efficiently and sustainably requires creative and considered thinking and a willingness to explore ideas with others.
The projects were awarded just over £5m and will be run from Bath, Birmingham, Loughborough and Warwick universities and involve academics from 12 institutions. Winning schemes included a project that will investigate the use of a common class of plant to clean poisoned soils.