In Indonesia, a concrete composite material made partly of used diapers was strong enough to construct the walls and floors of a house, according to the Journal Scientific Reports. Researchers replaced a percentage of the sand used in concrete with fibers from recycled diapers. The diapers had been cleaned, sterilized and shredded. Such recycling turns non degradable waste into a resource for low-cost housing.
Studies found for non-load-bearing walls in a house, up to 40% of the sand used for concrete could be replaced by shredded diapers, for columns and beams in a single-story unit, the replacement rate was 27%. For a complete, 387 square foot home that was constructed, roughly 8% of the sand in concrete and mortar overall could be swapped out for diaper shreds-about 1.7 cubic meters of waste repurposed rather than being dumped straight into. a landfill.
Disposable diapers are made primarily of plastic and pulp, and they contain significant amounts of superabsorbant polymer fillers, or SAPs. These SAPSs, turn the liquids into gels, and hold them even under pressure-exactly what diapers and adult incontinence products do. The diapers have a life cycle of at least 500 years, experts say, meaning that the first disposable diapers ever created are most likely still buried in landfills with centuries to go before decomposing.
Diaper technology is not brand new. More than 100,000 used diapers were used to pave a road in Wales. Cheers to helping save the world!