The four-centuries-old Trinity College attached to the University of Dublin in Ireland will soon collaborate with the VIT University to promote research on eco-friendly concrete technology.
This was disclosed by Dr Roger P West, associate professor at the Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering at Trinity, who was on a visit to VIT on Tuesday.
Roger said an MoU would be signed between the two institutions soon to collaborate on research and student exchange programme. “I am impressed with the research output, faculty and the laboratory facilities at VIT in the field of concrete technology,” he said adding that VIT would also be requested to join the Ireland-India Concrete Research Initiative.
Roger said a joint research programme with the IIT Delhi had already been initiated recently.
“The focus is to suggest technological solutions that are eco-friendly, cost effective and based on various concrete technologies for housing in India,” he added. He said a team of students and faculties at IIT Delhi had already started working on developing bamboo reinforced concrete technology for building houses in collaboration with Trinity College.
The technology involved replacing carbon-footprint producing steel with bamboos and binding them using epoxy glues to cut down on the cost. Roger said he and his research team had already constructed toilets, water tanks and small houses using this technology. “With Indian collaboration, we are exploring the possibility of extending this technology to build two to three-storey buildings that would long last,” he added.
Since India is blessed with bamboo in abundance, its application in building technology would be appropriate and would cut down carbon-footprint to a large extent. In Ireland, 30 per cent of houses were built using timber-based concrete structures.
“Due to extreme climatic conditions,we are not able to use bamboo technology but we would be glad to share our expertise in this field and the testing facilities with Indian researchers,” Roger added.
Research collaborations on concrete technology had been initiated with Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani, IIT Varanasi, IIT Delhi, NIT Jabalpur and Tapar University in Punjab. “I am happy that VIT has already undertaken research in developing alternative building construction materials such as fly ash, recycled materials, ground granulated blast furnace slag, etc,” he said.
Roger said the Irish university has initiated the process of establishing a ‘science gallery’ in Bangalore on the lines of what had been established on its own campus, to showcase fusion of science and arts as part of its global initiative to popularise science.
These kind of galleries had also been planned in Australia (Melbourne), Moscow, London and Paris, he further added.