Hawaii Patent of the Month – April 2021

Industrial waste is currently an unavoidable by-product of industrial and mining operations. Non-hazardous wastes like chemically inert substances (e.g. rock, glass, dirt etc) and samples without PCBs or hydrocarbons are often recycled and reused, preserving the environment and generating value for the industry. Recycling is quite limited by the material of the waste however, with few systems in place to recycle waste from construction and demolition operations. Oceanit Laboratories, Inc. has created a novel recycling method which turns this waste into a useful product.

Construction, demolition, hydraulic fracturing, and mining operations produce similar waste products. This waste is modified slightly and repurposed. For instance, solid waste like rocks or wood is modified into a filtration media, fracturing sand, or an abrasive media. The modifications made depend on the original waste product and the final intended purpose. In some cases, their system uses encapsulating agents to create an agglomerate of the waste particles. The majority of their recycling methods result in the creation of a proppant which can be used in featuring, helping to keep a hydraulic fracture open. This allows reuse of local and natural materials in fracturing processes and prevents unnecessary addition of materials to the environment.

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