Building construction in the recycling system – concrete made with recycled aggregate in Switzerland

Resource-conserving building construction within the recycling system has been made possible in Switzerland by standards that are in step with current practice and through the willingness to undertake extensive research and development work. One example of this is the technical code of practice MB SIA 2030 for safe application of concrete containing recycled aggregate in concrete construction. Another example is the development of the resource-conserving Portland cement ZN/D 32,5 R. This has provided a new cement that closes the construction materials cycle by re-using local high-grade processed mixed granular material. This has made it possible to conserve natural resources, save landfill space and reduce emissions.

1 Introduction

Switzerland’s infrastructure would be virtually unthinkable without concrete. Of the nearly 1.5 billion t of construction materials that have been used in buildings, concrete accounts for more than half with over 800 t. Civil engineering accounts for a further 306 million t [1, 2].

Every year concrete production in Switzerland takes about 50 million t of gravel and sand. For years the policy in Switzerland has been to rely increasingly on concrete containing recycled aggregate to conserve gravel resources. Mineral materials from the dismantling of buildings are processed into...

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