Cleantech business Novacem has raised £1m from Imperial Innovations Group plc, the London Technology Fund, and the Royal Society Enterprise Fund as it seeks to develop carbon absorbent cement.
Novacem is a spin-out from Imperial College London and is based on research produced by the civil and environmental engineering department there. It has already started a £1.5m project, funded by the UK Government’s Technology Strategy Board, to build a pilot plant, and raised ‘proof of concept’ capital from the London Development Agency.
The company is developing a cement which absorbs CO2 as it hardens, using magnesium
silicates, as opposed to limestone in traditional cement. Over 2.5 billon tonnes of cement is produced each year, responsible for 5% of global CO2 emissions, and cement volumes are set to double by 2050. Novice estimates that for every tonne of ordinary cement replaced by the type they are developing, around 0.75 tonnes of CO2 could be captured and stored indefinitely.