Speaker 1: 00:05 EPS is a huge problem for Australia at the moment. Currently, Australia only uses about one percent of domestically recycled EPS in its products. This is primarily due to the fact that we don't have any large scale domestic EPS facilities. So, there's a huge opportunity for Australia to take its EPS waste, and start to create closed loop systems, and turn it into products that are more valuable.
Eric Zhang: 00:33 The process I made to make the office signs, I started from collecting all the EPS waste at TGS, and then we take the EPS waste to the compressor, and then we put a lot of EPS material into the compressor, and it comes out with a long solid form.
Eric Zhang: 01:08 The material is very hot from the compressor. We put directly the waste into the mold, and then we press the mold to make the office signs. But, it cools off quite slow, and it's not liquid enough so it wouldn't form into a very perfect rectangular shape.
Berto P.: 01:41 The focus is around EPS, the broader picture is around what we can do with waste material. So this notion of closed loop design or manufacturing is the Holy Grail, and I think when we work around a community, we've got a very good chance of achieving that goal of developing a closed loop design.
Chris Banham: 02:09 When we were considering the sustainability of the different designs and the different products that we wanted to make, there were quite a few factors that we took into consideration. First of all, we thought about the value of the product that we would be creating, because we also wanted to try and create a closed loop system, we wanted to create a product that had more of a chance of staying within the UTS community, and wouldn't leave the campus.
Chris Banham: 02:34 We also wanted to create a product that had some educational value, so a product that was visible to people. Something that they could touch and use, and become aware about what it was made of, and so hopefully we could education them around the types of waste that's being created on campus and how the UTS was trying to use that waster in a positive way.
Thomas Lee: 02:58 What does success look like for this project? It'll be great if we're able to create something from recycled EPS that was more useful for service providers within UTS then current products that they have. If it created a bit of noise to change mindsets and practices around recycling and attitudes towards waster within the university, that would be really okay.
Thomas Lee: 03:25 We're not going to make a huge splash in terms of the total amount of energy we save from a global perspective, but if it begins to change mindsets, and practices around thinking about waste differently, I think that's a really good measure of success.