Transforming Waste into Value: The Covestro Australia team visit UNSW SMaRT Centre

Professor Veena Sahajwalla
Photo credit: Anna Kucera

On November 16th 2018, members of the Covestro team, including Managing Director Rebecca Lee visited the eWaste Microfactory at the University of New South Wales’ Centre for Sustainable Materials Research and Technology (SMaRT Centre). They were welcomed by Professor Veena Sahajwalla, Director of the SMaRT Centre, and later during the tour of the microfactory, Keith Monaghan, Senior Microfactory Engineer, also joined.

The SMaRT Centre has been on the radar for Covestro for some time, as their work aligns closely with Covestro’s commitment to the ‘three P’s’ of sustainability; People, Planet, and Profit.

The primary objective of the SMaRT Centre is to work collaboratively with industry to transform waste into value. They work with industry, global research partners, NGOs, as well as local, state and federal governments, and develop innovative environmental solutions for the world’s biggest waste challenges.

According to Rebecca Lee from Covestro Australia, “The work currently underway at the SMaRT Centre is truly inspiring. Turning waste into reusable products and materials is the way of the future. Professor Sahajwalla’s team have a great track record of delivering research and technology that is suitable for rapid implementation, and this is very appealing to us as industry suppliers” she said.

The work currently underway at the SMaRT Centre connects with Covestro’s view that waste can be seen as a resource. In fact, researches and technicians at Covestro have already developed cardyon®, a plastic product that is derived from 20% carbon dioxide.

The UNSW’s SMaRT Centre is the research partner for Soft Landing, Australia’s national mattress product stewardship scheme. As a founding supply partner of Soft Landing, Covestro takes great interest in the work of the SMaRT Centre, and applauds the sustainable material research that is currently underway.

Covestro Australia is currently exploring options around engaging with the SMaRT Centre as a future research partner.