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UAE architects make cement from salt



UAE architects make cement from salt

The Dubai-based architect duo is trying to break away from conventional building practices with alternative cement contained in the UAE salt plains and made using problematic waste materials.

Wael Al Awar and Kenichi Teramoto, lead architects at wow, requested scientific knowledge from universities in the UAE and Japan to make cement made using salt water produced by UAE desalination plants, which remove salt from seawater.

They were inspired by UAE’s mineral-rich sabkha – the salt flats that are part of the country’s wetlands. “This is a large area … which is often overlooked,” Al Awar told CNN.

Sabkha has been used in architecture before: centuries ago, beams were carved from the salt flats and used to build Shiva, a medieval city in Egypt that is close to the Libyan border. But instead of mining the subtle sabkha ecosystem, Al Awar and Kenichi turned to salted wastewater, which contains many of the same minerals.

The ancient fortress of Shali in Shiva Oasis, Egypt. Credit: BOISONCLE CRIS / AFP / AFP via Getty Images

The rare freshwater UAE has one of the largest desalination operations in the world. It produces around one fifth of the world’s saltwater as a by-product – around 28 million cubic meters per day, according to one 2019 report supported by the United Nations. But throwing saltwater into the sea can endanger marine life. Finding uses for desalination brine has become a national focus, prompting the launch of 3.4 million AED ($ 930,000) “Rethink the Saltwater Challenge“earlier this year.
Close-up of sabkha flats in the UAE. The flat contains microbes and is a

Close-up of sabkha flats in the UAE. The flat contains microbes and is a “living environment [that] actually absorbs CO2, “according to architect Wael Al Awar. Credit: Courtesy of the UAE National Pavilion La Biennale in Venice / waiwai

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Brine contains magnesium minerals. Kemal Celik, assistant professor of civil and urban engineering at New York University in Abu Dhabi and part of the team at the university’s AMBER Lab, extracted magnesium compounds from liquids, and used them to make cement.

Celik said the cement was put into a block, which was then placed in a carbon dioxide chamber to regulate – an innovation that accelerated the production process. Cement was subjected to testing in the UAE before being sent to Japan, where the block passed further strength and stiffness tests. In addition, an algorithm was developed to calculate how safe a block is when used in construction, Mika Araki, a structural designer at the University of Tokyo, told CNN.

The precast block can be used to build a one-story building “tomorrow,” Al Awar said, but he and Kenichi hope to develop further products for use in multi-storey buildings.

Al Awar claims their magnesium-based cement can “work on a par with Portland cement,” which uses calcium carbonate as a raw material and is the most commonly used cement in concrete manufacturing.

However, magnesium cement has limitations. As a salt-based product, it can be corroded for steel reinforcement, he said, although reinforcement with other materials is possible.

Salt water-based cement precast blocks made by Al Awar, Kenichi and their academic collaborators.

Salt water-based cement precast blocks made by Al Awar, Kenichi and their academic collaborators. Credit: Sahil Abdul Latheef / waiwai

Precast blocks are cured in the carbon dioxide chamber, because cement requires a higher percentage of carbon dioxide to harden enough than it contains in the atmosphere.

Precast blocks are cured in the carbon dioxide chamber, because cement requires a higher percentage of carbon dioxide to harden enough than it contains in the atmosphere. Credit: Dina Al Khatib / waiwai

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Professor John Provis is the deputy head of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Sheffield University in England, and is not affiliated with the project. He said salt-based cement was “a very good idea,” explaining globally only one third of the cement used in reinforced concrete.

“This salt water hurts to be thrown out,” he added. “They take local trash and do cool things with it. I think it’s a very good synergy there.”

Al Awar said that he and Kenichi were motivated by a desire to build a more sustainable and environmentally friendly architecture. “Given the CO2 emissions in the world and global warming, and all these alarms that have been ringing for years, it is our duty – it is our responsibility – to take action,” he said.

Cement production is often energy intensive and have a large carbon footprint. According to the International Energy Agency, the cement sector is the third largest industrial energy consumer in the world and is responsible for it 7% of global carbon dioxide emissions. Celik said building a carbon footprint of magnesium cement is part of an ongoing life cycle study, which will compare it with ordinary Portland cement and other materials.
Kenichi Teramoto and Wael Al Awar, co-curators of the UAE National Pavilion at the Venice Biennale of Architecture.

Kenichi Teramoto and Wael Al Awar, co-curators of the UAE National Pavilion at the Venice Biennale of Architecture. Credit: Courtesy of the UAE National Pavilion

In May 2021, Al Awar and Kenichi will lead the UAE National Pavilion at the Venice Biennale of Architecture, where alternative cement will be displayed at their “Wetland” exhibition. The pavilion will be made of magnesium-based cement, although Celik said the cement will not be based on salt water because it is not ready to increase production.

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“The research is still early,” said Al Awar. “It must go through a natural process of trial and trial and error to get a place. But we are very optimistic.”

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Lucas Chazarreta becomes the Portuguese market leader Japan Tobacco International – Marketing Specialist



Lucas Chazarreta becomes the Portuguese market leader Japan Tobacco International - Marketing Specialist

Lucas Chazarreta has become the new CEO of Japan Tobacco International (JTI) for the Portuguese market. The professional replaced Yannick Giraud as the head of a team of 46 professionals at the Japanese multinational corporation that produces the tobacco brands Winston and Camel.

Lucas Chazarreta, 42, born in Argentina, has been with JTI since 2004. He holds a business administration degree from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro and a degree in marketing from Martin College in Australia, and attended the Swiss School of Rio de Janeiro in January.

Lucas Chanzarreta has over 15 years of experience at JTI, having come to Portugal from Mexico. Previously, he has served as General Manager of the JTI Americas Cluster (Argentina, Bolivia and Peru) and Director of Marketing and Trade Marketing for Brazil, Peru and Argentina.

“My mission is to drive sustainable growth in the organization’s profitability and market share, and to provide professional growth opportunities for my team members. JTI has a very successful track record in Portugal, being the fastest growing company in the sector for several consecutive years. This growth is based on a portfolio of world famous brands and a very well trained and professional team of employees,” Lucas Chazarret said in a statement.

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Portimonense beat Pacos de Ferreira to become Portuguese champion



This Monday, Portimonense took their first win of the season at Portuguese Championship when visiting Pacos de Ferreira. The guests came out victorious, defeating the hosts with a score of 3:0.

Pacos de Ferreira takes on Estoril in the next round. The match will take place next Friday at 16:15 (Brazil time). With the defeat, the hosts continue without points and occupy the 15th position.

Portimonense finishes the second round of the Portuguese Championship in seventh position with three points. The team’s next match will be against Vitoria de Guimarães on Sunday at 16:30 at the Municipal Stadium of Portimão.

The first goal of the match was scored in the 31st minute. Iago Cariello shot on goal and fired into the right corner. Guests only increased their advantage in the final segment of the match, when in the 35th minute of the second half, Lukinha received at the entrance to the penalty area and hit hard.

The third and final goal of the game was scored four minutes later, in the 39th minute: Everton got a free kick in the penalty area and hit the net.

Check out the results of this Monday in the championship of Portugal:

nautical 1 x 2 Chavez
Aroca 1 x 0 Gil Vicente

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Is there an exam in Brazilian Portuguese?



if you are studying Brazilian Portuguese more likely than European Portuguese, you might be wondering which exam you can work on. Most people are familiar with the Portuguese CAPLE system, which corresponds to the A1, A2, B1, B2, C1 and C2 format of the European CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) standard.

Although there are many crossovers between European Portuguese and Brazilian Portuguese and they are essentially the same language, many people choose to focus on Brazilian Portuguese rather than European Portuguese. In most cases, if you’re planning to live in Portugal, you should probably focus on European Portuguese, as that’s what you’ll be in the most contact with. However, there are several reasons why you might decide that Brazilian Portuguese is the right choice for you.

The first and main reason if you are planning to move to Brazil is mainly for work or study. CELPE-Bras is the only language proficiency test recognized by the Brazilian Ministry of Education that may be required for a position or vacancy at a Brazilian university. Another reason could be that you don’t spend much time in Portugal and speak more Brazilians than Portuguese.

CELPE-Bras exam levels: Intermediate, Upper Intermediate, Advanced and Upper Advanced. They roughly correspond to B1, B2, C1 and C2. Once you have decided which level you want to test at (eg B2), the next step is to find a course that will take you to that level. Portuguese Pod101 e Portuguese semantics both offer content at this level, for example.

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It is recommended to sign up for the test in advance or at least set a date for the test. You should also read about what the test includes, which is a 20 minute oral component and a 3 hour written component based on the texts you read and the video and audio you listen to.

Some people are tempted by Brazilian Portuguese as it seems to be easier than European Portuguese, but that is not a good reason to learn it instead of Portuguese Portuguese. In addition, if you plan to apply for citizenship in Portugal – for example, if you qualify after five years of residence in Portugal – you will need to submit Portuguese level A2, which is actually a level below the easiest level you can get through in CELPE-Bras: Intermediate.

If you are interested in Brazilian Portuguese but want to learn Portuguese as a world language, there is a book dedicated to this: Meeting point: Portuguese as a world language. You can also find Brazilian and Portuguese teachers on websites like Italki which can help you practice your conversation and correct it when you confuse the two. However, in general, most courses focus on one or the other, so you need to figure out how to learn and support both.

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