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The practicality of using recycled PET as partial substitution of fine aggregate in concrete within the Darwin region

Di Lembo, Joshua Adamo (2016). The practicality of using recycled PET as partial substitution of fine aggregate in concrete within the Darwin region. Bachelor of Engineering (4th Year Project) Thesis, Charles Darwin University.

Document type: Thesis
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Author Di Lembo, Joshua Adamo
Title The practicality of using recycled PET as partial substitution of fine aggregate in concrete within the Darwin region
Institution Charles Darwin University
Publication Date 2016
Thesis Type Bachelor of Engineering (4th Year Project)
Supervisor Wolff, R.
Prathapan, Sabaratnam
Subjects ENGINEERING
0905 - Civil Engineering
Abstract The research topic investigates the practicality of using Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) as a partial substitution of fine aggregate in concrete within Darwin. The aspect of main focus is practically transforming waste PET into a form that can be included in concrete within Darwin. Through background research and analysis of the mechanical properties of the altered concrete, it was determined that PET is suitable to be used in concrete. The mechanical properties of concrete mixes with various amounts of PET was compared to a regular 25MPa concrete mix. These results showed that concrete with less than 10% fine aggregate replacement is suitable for concrete used in areas such as kerbs, footpaths or driveways.

Due to the high use of concrete in construction, natural sand is becoming scarce. This has introduced acts of seabed and beach dredging to make up for the material that is difficult to obtain from regular mining. Waste plastic introduced to concrete can assist in decreasing the need for natural sand as well as assisting in reducing the amount of plastic pollution.

As Darwin does not have the facilities to process PET, machinery was sourced and hypothetically introduced to the Bevcon Recycling facility to determine a cost to produce PET fines. This resulted in a cost of $1.68/kg compared to the cost of natural sand used in concrete being $0.06/kg.

The overall findings of this thesis indicates that the introduction of PET fines to concrete is not practical due to the high cost and low demand for the material. For this to be introduced to construction activities, the capabilities of the product would need to be further explored.
Keyword concrete
recycled
polyethylene terephthalate
waste PET
fire aggregate
practicality
environment
natural resources
plastic pollution
natural sand
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Created: Mon, 28 Nov 2016, 14:25:30 CST by Jessie Ng