Thanks to an innovative college student, a new formula for road pavement that repairs itself when exposed to rain has been created. For his ingenious rubber recipe, Mexican student Israel Antonio Briseño Carmona won the top national James Dyson Award of 2019.
The unique rubber is made by melting down recycled tires into a putty then combining the result with a number of additives. The final product harness rainwater as a catalyst for regeneration. Following a rain shower, the calcium silicates are spurred to repair the road. Ordinarily, inclement weather causes roads to crumble.
According to GoodNewsNetwork, Carmona is a student at Coahuila Autonomous University. He was inspired to develop the formula as a means of addressing Mexico’s notoriously deteriorated roads.
“Damage is caused by rain filtering to the base of pavements, weakening it and creating subsidence,” explained Carmona. “This is how the idea [for] turning the greatest degradation agent into a recovery agent was born.”
“At present, there are already pavements that regenerate—but none use water as a means of regeneration … much less made of tires,” he added.
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Once the road formula is approved for use in Mexico, Carmona has plans to begin brewing the asphalt through his own construction company.
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Image Credit: James Dyson Awards