Canadian Manufacturing

East Coast researchers looking to use recycled tires to help build bridges

With potential uses in a range of engineering projects, a team of Dalhousie researchers is aiming to use tire-derived aggregate to strengthen soft soil

July 20, 2016  by The Canadian Press


The research project aims to give tires a second life as a part of engineering projects

HALIFAX—Researchers in Halifax are seeing whether material from recycled tires could be used to strengthen soil and help the construction industry.

Hany El Naggar at Dalhousie University is leading a team of international students in assessing how so-called tire derived aggregate, which is made from recycled tires, can enhance the strength of soil for engineering projects like bridges, buildings and highways.

The professor at the Department of Civil and Resource Engineering says there are a lot of soft soils in Nova Scotia that are too weak to support infrastructure.

He says mixing the aggregate with soil reinforces the strength of the foundation soil, allowing it to be built on without any risk that it will fail.


Environmental engineer Jim Simmons says the research could make Nova Scotia a world leader in resolving the environmental and health issues related to scrap tires.

He says discarded scrap tires are breeding grounds for mosquitoes and can be sources of pollutants when they catch fire, creating a need for an environmentally friendly way of disposing of the tires.

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