$3.54 million to power industry-led research into sustainable concrete

22 November 2023

The SmartCrete Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) has approved eight industry-led research projects valued at over $10 million (cash and in-kind) to accelerate Australia’s transition to sustainable concrete.

Following its latest funding round, SmartCrete CRC will invest $1.77 million of its Industry-led Research Collaboration Fund in research and development (R&D) projects that explore sustainable design, use and management of concrete. Matched by $1.77 million of industry investment and $6.5 million in-kind contributions, the projects aim to develop innovative solutions that enhance Australia’s concrete sector, supply chain competitiveness and reduce carbon emissions.

SmartCrete CRC CEO Clare Tubolets said that she was impressed by the calibre of project applications and highlighted the important role that collaborative research plays in transforming Australia’s concrete ecosystem.

“At SmartCrete we’re helping to fast-track Australia’s transition to net zero concrete by 2050. The fact we’re seeing more funding go out to research projects highlights that industry is ready to tackle this challenge with us,” Tubolets said.

“These eight approved projects alone represent a total research investment of over $3.5 million –a positive sign of commitment from the sector.”

“SmartCrete CRC’s expertise, understanding of the concrete ecosystem and collaborative research funding means that the CRC can provide pathways to design, develop and commercialise materials, technologies and process that accelerate Australia’s transition to sustainable concrete.”

To date, Smartcrete CRC has supported over 25 projects, purposely investing $15 million of Commonwealth funding in innovation collaborations across three research programs – sustainable concrete, engineered solutions and asset management – that drive material change, develop new technologies and promote best practice to decarbonise concrete.

The newly approved projects cover a broad gamut of concrete innovation including the development of novel concrete sensing technologies, testing of new supplementary cementitious materials and systems to enhance circularity in building materials.

SmartCrete CRC Chair Emeritus Professor Elizabeth Taylor AO said these eight projects will continue to build on this momentum.

“SmartCrete CRC works with industry, government and universities to transform Australia’s concrete ecosystem and deliver positive outcomes. We support smart, industry-led research that solves industry identified challenges, creating opportunities that add value to our partners as well as the broader community”, Professor Taylor said.

Successful applications were assessed through a competitive, merit-based selection process, assessed by an independent committee.

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