Photo: NGI

EarthresQue is a Centre for Research-Based Innovation (SFI) funded by the Research Council of Norway. The center will develop technologies and systems for sustainable handling and treatment of waste and surplus materials.

2020 - 2028

The Research Council of Norway

Finding better solutions for sustainable management and use of surplus masses and waste.

About the centre

  • I dag utgjør forurenset jord, avfall fra bygg og anleggssektoren, slagg og aske mer enn 70% av deponerte materialer i Norge. I tillegg er det store mengder rene overskuddsmasser, som jord, knust stein og fjell, som går til massetipp.

    Dette er sløsing med verdifulle ressurser, deponivolum og arealer. Målet med SFI earthresQue er å utvikle teknologier, løsninger, verdikjeder og rammevilkår for en mer bærekraftig håndtering og behandling av avfall og overskuddsmasser.

  • The research in the centre will benefit from a close collaboration between user partners and researchers in order to enhance knowledge developed that responds to the need of the industry and society. The research will also be incorporated into the educational programs at NMBU and BI to ensure a competent workforce.

    The primary objective of the research in earthresQue is to develop technologies, systems innovation, and a governance framework towards sustainable management and treatment of wastes and earth materials, building on science-based education and information.

    The research is organised in three interconnected workpackages (WP):

    Recycling and reuse through new treatment processes for contaminated soils, surplus masses, construction and demolition wastes, making them suitable as raw materials in new products. Including management of old landfill sites and sustainable solutions for future landfills.

    Sustainable management of waste materials by developing methodologies and models to assess and document sustainability, including all aspects of environmental, societal, and economic aspects of recycled materials and treatment methods, based on internationally accepted standards.

    Regulatory framework and governance methodology to remove current obstacles, both in economic, regulatory, and governance terms. This includes optimised material flow and business concepts to encompass society’s need for more reuse/recycling and less use of virgin earth materials.

  • The overall goal of the centre is to increase innovation and value creation in the sector handling and recycling surplus masses and wastes. Close collaboration between prominent research groups and innovation focused user partners will develop competence and technology that will renew and evolve private businesses and the public sector.

    Long-term research collaboration will create opportunities for innovation and increased competitiveness among the user partners. Societal impact, beyond the project partners directly involved in the centre's activities, is expected.

    The centre will define, evaluate, and follow up research results with innovation potential, and contribute to knowledge and technology transfer within an area with great opportunities for value creation.

    Innovations in SFI earthresQue will contribute to new technology, new treatment processes, new products, new test and measurement methods, improved tools for risk management and the development of regulations. Innovations that will contribute to sustainable management and treatment of waste and surplus masses.

    The maturity of technology development is often measured on a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) scale. The TRL of a unique product or solution indicates the status of development and available performance documentation. A centre for research-based innovation, such as SFI earthresQue, focuses on the early development phases (TRL 2-4) but will through its research activities also contribute to commercialization and spin-off projects.

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