Home » Greener concrete alternative ‘Concretene’ gets support from Arup & Black Swan Graphene

Greener concrete alternative ‘Concretene’ gets support from Arup & Black Swan Graphene

by Maryam Bint-Kazam
Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre, Manchester University - John B Hewitt/Shutterstock

The developer of Concretene, a technology designed to reduce carbon emissions in construction, has concluded equity deals with global engineering consultancy Arup and international graphene supplier Black Swan Graphene.

Concretene, developed by Nationwide Engineering Research & Development (NERD), is a graphene-enhanced admixture for concrete that has demonstrated the ability to reduce CO2 emissions by around 30%.

The product has been developed in partnership with The University of Manchester’s Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (GEIC).

Arup provides design, engineering, architecture, planning, and advisory services across all aspects of the built environment.

The deal with Arup – through Ove Arup Ventures Ltd – provides 4.2% equity in NERD in exchange for collaboration and expertise towards global rollout of the technology.

Black Swan Graphene is a producer of low–cost and high-performance graphene powders.

At the core of the partnership between Black Swan and NERD is the completion of an equity swap, where each company will own approximately 5% of the outstanding shares of the other.

There will also be a supply agreement, under which NERD will be sourcing its graphene requirements from Black Swan.

‘Very optimistic’

Rob Hibberd, CEO of Nationwide Engineering Research and Development, said: “We are delighted to formalise these partnerships with Black Swan and Arup as part of NERD and we look forward to combining our skillsets to deliver Concretene to the construction industry in our drive to reduce global CO2 emissions.

“This is further enhanced by our unique, long-term research collaboration with the University of Manchester to further understand the complex world of nanomaterial technology.

“We see Concretene as the first product of many that this partnership will develop, with progress in paints, polymers, and asphalt already in advanced stages as well.”

Matt Lovell, director at Arup, said: “Continued innovation in the production of concrete can drive the construction industry’s journey towards net-zero carbon emissions.

“Supporting that transformative change with our NERD partnership furthers Arup’s goal of shaping a better, more sustainable world.

“We look forward to using our commercial know-how and deep expertise in the built environment to help NERD’s innovators realise the full potential of Concretene.”

Simon Marcotte, president and CEO of Black Swan, said: “The partnerships announced today are poised to have far-reaching implications for the global concrete industry.

“By leveraging the exceptional performance of the NERD process and Arup’s expertise, reach, and leadership, this integrated supply chain can provide a turnkey solution and revolutionise the concrete industry on a global scale.

“Considering that concrete is the second–most–utilized material on Earth, surpassed only by water, it is difficult to imagine a more exciting opportunity.

“I am very optimistic about the impact of this collaboration and its potential to catalyse sustainable and innovative practices in the industry.”

Image: Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre, Manchester University. Credit: John B Hewitt/Shutterstock

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