Excursion week of the PhD students
in Southern Germany and Switzerland
From May 31 to June 3, 2022, the PhD students of Verbund.NRW went on an excursion through southern Germany and Switzerland to visit various companies active in the field of circular economy in the construction industry.
Circular economy seminar at Heinrich Feess GmbH & Co KG
The first stop on the trip was the demolition, recycling and processing company Heinrich Feess GmbH & Co KG in Kirchheim unter Teck. After a presentation of the company, a lively discussion on the status quo of the circular economy in the German construction industry as well as current challenges from both a technical and an economic perspective took place during the circular economy seminar. Afterwards, the PhD students visited the company's processing facilities.
Visit to the Eberhard Group
After spending the night in Konstanz, the next day they went on to the Eberhard Group and its subsidiary Zirkulit GmbH. After Florian Robineck and Remo Hug had presented the group of companies and the CO2-absorbing Zirkulit concrete, which is largely made of recycled aggregate, there was again a lively discussion with the PhD students, in which national differences between German and Swiss regulations in the construction industry and other topics were discussed. The group then toured the state-of-the-art EbiMIK processing plant, where construction waste can be sorted automatically using laser sensors and robots. This was followed by a tour of the Ebirec concrete production plant.
Visit to IFAT in Munich
The next day, the group continued to Munich to visit the world's leading trade fair for recycling technologies IFAT and to present Verbund.NRW in the Science Corner on Thursday (Link). In addition to the presentation, there was also the opportunity at the trade fair to experience numerous technologies and innovations from the field of recycling, waste and water management live and to make contacts.
Visit to the Verbund.NRW practice partner Lindner Group
For the last stop of the tour, the PhD students then went to Lower Bavaria to visit the Lindner Group in Arnstorf, one of the practical partners of the research college. The Verbund.NRW contact Prof. Steretzeder, head of Integrated Management Service and Green Building at Lindner Group, had put together a varied program for the group, which included a presentation of the Lindner Group and its current circular economy campaign, a tour of the production facilities for floors and ceiling panels, and a guided tour of the test facilities of the IngenieurGesellschaft für innovative Bautechnologie mbH (GiB), also located in Arnstorf. This visit gave the PhD students an insight into test facilities for measuring the stability of façade elements, the fire resistance of building elements and the indoor climate and acoustics. The visit was rounded off by a joint lunch with Prof. Steretzeder.
All in all, the tour not only provided the Verbund.NRW PhD students with numerous insights into practice, but also with an interesting exchange of ideas and numerous impulses for their own research.
We would like to express our sincere thanks to our contacts at the companies and for the invitation to IFAT!