DeakinBio - developing sustainable bio-based tiles

by Aoife in Manchester, Greater Manchester, United Kingdom

DeakinBio - developing sustainable bio-based tiles
We did it
On 15th April 2023 we successfully raised £5,709 with 38 supporters in 28 days

The aim of our project is to raise £5k which will help us buy a 100 tonne hydraulic press and start scaling up our production!

by Aoife in Manchester, Greater Manchester, United Kingdom

 New stretch target

Our bigger plans are to purchase a semi-automated 200 tonne hydraulic press. This will speed up our production time massively and enable us to fulfil big orders. 


Background

We are a team of scientists and artists who came together as part of an art-science collaboration in 2021. Our keen interest in biomaterials led us to an exciting discovery where we created three new materials: Fabalith, Cyalith and StarCrete. 

StarCrete is a bio-based alternative to concrete that uses potato starch as a binder instead of cement. Cement production accounts for about 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions, so StarCrete could be a much greener alternative. StarCrete is particularly promising for off-word construction applications.

Cyalith and Fabalith are bio-based alternatives to ceramic tiles. Fabalith uses a binder obtained from Aquafaba - the gross water most people throw way when opening a can of chickpeas. Cyalith uses a binder obtained from algae, which would be a by-product of 3rd generation biofuels production (non-impactful biofuels).

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A 10 x 10 Fabalith tile reward

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Cyalith tile + stand reward

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AI image of Cyalith bespoke art piece

Why does this matter?

The ceramic tiles that decorate our kitchens and bathrooms have a huge carbon footprint owing to the energy-intensive firing steps needed to harden and glaze the materials. If the world is to meet future emissions reductions targets, we need to develop radical green alternatives to ceramics tiles and the energy-intensive processes that produce them.

Our tiles don’t need to be fired in a kiln, reducing the carbon footprint by about 80-90% compared to conventional ceramic tiles. Our technology uniquely combines plant-derived biopolymers with inorganic materials to produce bio-based composites (biocomposites) with structures and compositions similar to natural materials such as seashells, tooth enamel and pearl.

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Sunny showcasing our tiles at our first trade show <3

At the moment we are still working with small-scale equipment, preparing each tile by hand. The money from this Crowdfunder will enable us to buy a 100 tonne hydraulic press, which will allow us to scale up our production and help us realise our dream of commercialising our sustainable alternative to ceramic tiles.

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Our tiles are still handmade in our founder's cellar, kitchen and basement! Please help us to scale up and expand!

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Photos from our initial scoping experiments :)

Rewards

This project offers rewards in return for your donation. Please select a reward below.

£49 or more

8 of 20 claimed

Cyalith or Fabalith tile

10 x 10 cm Cyalith or Fabalith tile with a display stand

£9 or more

2 of 50 claimed

Small Cyalith or Fabalith sample

1.3 cm circular Cyalith or Fabalith sample

£15 or more

2 of 25 claimed

Small StarCrete sample

1.3 cm circular StarCrete sample make with scientific-grade Lunar or Martian regolith simulant (moon or Mars dust)

£19 or more

6 of 50 claimed

Medium Cyalith of Fabalith sample

4 cm circular Cyalith or Fabalith sample

£29 or more

2 of 30 claimed

Minatare Cyalith or Fabalith tile

5.5 x 5.5 cm Cyalith or Fabalith tile with a display stand

£149 or more

4 of 10 claimed

Small Cyalith art piece

Bespoke art piece; 2x2 Cyalith tiles (tile size: 10 x 10 cm) with a wooden frame

£299 or more

3 of 5 claimed

Medium Cyalith art piece

Bespoke art piece; 3x3 Cyalith tiles (tile size: 10 x 10 cm) with a wooden frame

£499 or more

2 of 2 claimed

Large Cyalith art piece

Bespoke art piece; 4x4 Cyalith tiles (tile size: 10 x 10 cm) with a wooden frame

£1,000 or more

1 of 1 claimed

One-of-a-kind chess set

A handmade chess set made from a combination of Cyalith and Fabalith tiles. Kings are made from StarCrete using scientific-grade simulated Lunar and Martian regolith.

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