Recycled plastic roads

Sustainability Problem: Inefficient roads materials, excessive unused non biodegradable plastics .

Solution:

KWS, a VolkerWessels company, are working on the development of plastic roads, also known as the PlasticRoad. PlasticRoad is being piloted in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Every component of the PlasticRoad is being designed to make its application completely circular, with the goal of using recycled plastic as much as possible.

The roads have 3 unique features that make it last longer and be more useful.

  1. The roads are modular: It makes the road light and easy to build.
  2. Hollow Design: The roads are hollow beneath, which allows for any situational flooding to sink in. Its usage also includes water storage, transit of cables and pipes, heating roads, generating energy etc.
  3. Sustainable: The recycled plastic makes it a circular product, which uses plastic and repurposes it as material for roads.

Their long range objective is: to ensure 100% circularity in plastic use, makes the road 4 times lighter, last 3 times longer and reduce construction time by 70%.

Stakeholders:

  • City  government
  • Transport department
  • Citizens
  • Water Authority
  • Disaster relief agencies

Next Steps:

  • Review impact of the new road
  • Apply to newer markets and high potential affected areas
  • Innovate with more applications

 

References: https://www.plasticroad.eu/en/

Comments for another post: https://makeasmartcity.com/2017/10/30/cities-get-smart-by-prioritizing-mobility/comment-page-1/#comment-1374

 

 

“Sensoring” Bad Drivers

Sustainability Problem

  • Reduce gas usage in vehicles, which reduces CO2 emissions and related costs.

Summary of “The Fuel-Efficient Driver” by Daniel Gross

  • A matchbox-sized device with red, yellow and green lights is installed on the vehicle’s dash near the steering wheel. It objectively monitors 5 driving behaviors: hard breaking, acceleration, lane handling, cornering, and speeding.
  • Driving is a learned behavior. The GreenRoad device monitors the driver’s driving style in real time. When driving less efficiently—which wastes gas—the driver will receive a yellow or red status light. The driver will need to correct behavior for at least 10 minutes to return to the green status.
  • Good driving at consistent speeds (55 mph recommended) reduces fuel consumption between 4-5%. It also increases safety, reduces wear and tear on the vehicles, and reduces the number of accidents.
  • Data is transmitted to a centralized reporting hub. Driver reports are used to reward or correct drivers. In use, most drivers self-correct their behavior over a 3 week period using the status lights.
  • In one noted implementation the device was installed on a fleet of 2,400 busses with the target of reducing fuel consumption by 3%. A bus that drives 150,000 miles per year at 5 mpg uses 30,000 gallons of diesel. A 3% reduction saves $2,700 presuming a fuel price of $3/gallon.
  • The Energy Information Administration estimates that burning a gallon of diesel emits 22.38 pounds of CO2 . This  fuel savings would reduce CO2 emission by 20,145 pounds per year.

Stakeholders:

  • Companies with fleets of vehicles
  • Drivers
  • Mechanics
  • Oil & gas companies, producers and distributors
  • Mammals who breathe air
  • The environment

Deployment

  • The $40 device can be installed on any vehicle.
  • Companies that run fleets of cars, trucks, or busses would see a quick return on investment in reduced aggregate costs, encouraging them to invest in the technology.
  • An online dashboard allows for real time tracking and monitoring reports to allow business owners to immediately begin tracking the behavior of their drivers.

Resources: