A design student at the University of Edinburgh has made a marvelous discovery of using a bacteria and urine component coupled with sand to make up a concrete alternative. The student, Peter Trimble, was in the process of conceiving an idea for an artistic exhibit which was aimed at showcasing sustainability, when he stumbled upon the idea of ‘Dupe’, an organic alternative to industrial concrete.
A laboratory technician first introduced Sporosarcina pasteurii to the design student– a bacteria that possesses binding capabilities which is sometimes used by engineers to help prop up road signs. Trimble then proceeded to experiment with the bacteria by adding sand, fertilizer, calcium, and urea– a component which he derived from urine.
The result? After a year and hundreds of failed experiments, Trimble was able to perfect the process of creating an organic alternative to concrete which holds about 70% of the compression strength of its industrial counterpart.
Trimble considers his invention groundbreaking, as anyone with access to the naturally abundant substances which are required to create the organic concrete has the opportunity to build houses and other structures of their own.
Would you consider living in a house made from bacteria and urine? Share your thoughts with a comment below! 🙂