When it comes to global environmental scourges, old tires are a recurring nightmare for the ecosystem, with more than 1.5 billion waste tires created every year, most winding up in a landfill or burned.
A startup out of Manchester, UK has launched a line of products that makes recycled rubber more usable and viable thanks to the addition of graphene.
Space Blue’s “SpaceMat” is a flooring product made of graphene-enhanced recycled rubber. The graphene gives the material beneficial properties that have plagued the production of creating high-quality rubber floor mats from recycled tires, namely the release of potentially hazardous microparticles.
The SpaceMat is made from 80% recycled rubber and 20% graphene-enhanced rubber, more than doubling the strength of the rubber on its own.
“It’s really exciting to see this new company entering into the market, in particular with its focus on supporting environmental sustainability and a good re-use of scrap tires, which otherwise could cause significant pollution and waste product,” says James Baker, CEO of Graphene@Manchester.
The SpaceMat is being produced at commercial scale right now, and Space Blue is next turning its sights to other products using the same innovative methods, including traffic cones and doormats.