Stonehouse company secures £500,000 grant to develop biomaterials


Innovative building material business Adaptavate has secured £500,000 Government funding to develop new processes to take CO2 from air and polluting industries and lock it into the biomaterials of the future.

BreathaboardAdaptavate secured the funding through Innovate UK, the UK’s Innovation agency to help it to further develop techniques to take CO2 from the atmosphere and other CO2 emitting processes, such as lime and cement. The project focusses on locking this into construction products, such as its award-winning Breathaboard technology.

Adaptavate has been rethinking and redesigning the way building materials are produced, used and disposed of since 2015. It is developing and commercialising low-carbon construction products for healthy buildings and inhabitants which help ensure the longevity of the world’s fragile ecosystem while aiming to surpass the performance of market leading products.
Tom Robinson, the founder of Adaptavate, said: “This is a really exciting project at a pivotal point for Adaptavate. It enables us to grow the team and technical partnerships at a really exciting time in our industry. It affirms Adaptavate and the partner universities as leading the way in CO2 sequestration in building materials and industrial processes – helping us reach ambitious CO2 targets that are being set by governments and industrial bodies”.

In parallel the project is asking the question; can the waste of these materials be used as soil nutrients for use in agriculture, to grow more crops and bio-materials, completing a circular economy approach to construction bio-materials? Ground up construction waste will be compared to the digestate from Anaerobic Digestion (AD) of the same material. The AD process also generates synthetic gas, predominantly Methane. Here a second and third nutrient loop can be exploited as the Methane created can be burnt to create electricity to run the factory, creating CO, which can sequestered in the curing of new material. This is totally in line with Adaptavate’s purpose: to positively disrupt the material flows in the construction sector.

Jeff Ive, Technical Director at Adaptavate, said: “Environmentally positive solutions are not one size fits all, and neither are business cases. This project will allow us to scale the next generation of bio-materials though absorbing CO2 from emitting processes all over the world through localised production models. This is a really transformative way of looking at this conservative, vertically integrated industry that is looking for a step change”.

The project builds on the strong relationships that Adaptavate has built with the University of Bath and Bio composite Development Centre in York.

Professor Pete Walker, of the University of Bath and Director of BRE Centre of Innovative Construction Materials, said:“I am really excited to work with Adaptavate as it builds on our track record of working with this innovative leading SME, realising the potential impact of a previous BBSRC (Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council) funded project carried out in collaboration with the company. There is great potential is the development of genuinely low carbon, possibly even carbon neutral building materials for the mainstream industry – this is a real potential game-changing solution and we are excited to be a key part of it.”