Waste and Recycling Commercialisation Program to launch sustainable ideas into global markets


By Process Online Staff
Tuesday, 11 April, 2017


Innovyz Institute, along with Green Industries SA, has announced 10 successful technologies and ideas selected for Innovyz’s new Waste and Recycling Commercialisation Program, including two from South Australian universities.

After an intensive selection process, which included exploring valuable research and inventions from many universities, industry associations, small businesses and backyard inventors, the technologies and ideas chosen were those that offered highly innovative and sustainable solutions to some of Australia’s most challenging and costly waste management problems and demonstrated the potential to be commercially successful, both in Australia and overseas.

The successful technologies chosen included a new way to produce hydrogen with less energy, a process to use graphene to separate oil and water, and a process to separate foil from aluminium-laminated PE — something that has, until now, eluded recyclers.

In what could be considered a stunning breakthrough in Australia’s waste commercialisation industry, seven of the 10 successful applicants were from Australian universities.

Innovyz Institute Chairman Philip Vafiadis said, “Our waste and recycling program will go a long way towards ensuring important ideas turn into great companies and, through these companies, become commercial realities that deliver considerable tangible benefits to the world.

“The level of engagement that we have received from Australian universities has also been impressive. This is partly a result of our strong focus on creating meaningful relationships with universities, as well as the impact of recent federal government policy. This has opened up amazing opportunities for Australian invention and research to be the seeds of important new companies.”

Selection committee member Kevin McGuinness is chair of the board of Green Industries SA, an Innovyz Institute program partner. He said: “The quality of the ideas and research in Australia’s waste and recycling area is fantastic and shows Australia’s growing global competitiveness. Our partnership with Innovyz Institute is critical to ensuring ideas are translated into products and services that can be exported and, ultimately, make the world a better and cleaner place.”

The 10 successful applicants cover a diverse range of ideas, combined with a balanced mix of applicants from both industry and research institutes. The selected innovations and ideas include:

  • A method that reduces the cost of hydrogen production by reducing the energy used.
  • A software application used by brand owners and packaging designers to assess the recyclability of packaging at the design stage. Businesses can first determine ways to make packaging more efficient and recyclable, and then classify the recyclability of each component to select the correct on-pack recycling instructions.
  • A unique presetting pressure technique, along with the use of geopolymers, to massively increase the quality of recycled concrete.
  • A 3D robust graphene composite in several different forms able to separate oil from water.
  • A new technology that continuously monitors the surface temperature of plant canopies (leaves) to improve water use efficiencies in orchards, vineyards and farms.
  • A new and very cost-efficient process for recycling certain PVC products and aluminium-laminated PE, such as plastic foil medical trays.
  • A promising new technology currently under commercial development that will significantly reduce the amount of urban storm water pollution reaching environmentally sensitive downstream ecosystems.
  • A new process that injects carbon dioxide into recycled aggregate to improve its quality and that of recycled concrete.
  • A portable filtration system that collects fine particles, plaster and sediment from wastewater, preventing them from entering the water system.
  • A method to remove BOD and nitrogen from wastewater that uses dramatically less energy.

The Innovyz Institute program will commence in April 2017 and conclude in nine months, with intent to launch the 10 successful companies into world markets.

Green Industries SA, a South Australian government statutory authority, is a funding partner for the Innovyz Waste and Recycling Commercialisation Program. Green Industries SA helps develop the green economy, promoting the more efficient use of resources and the conservation and recovery of scarce resources.

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