SIA Finalist: Zenyth Innovations
  1. Home
  2. Stories
  3. Interview with SIA Finalist 2023: Zenyth Innovations

Interview with SIA Finalist 2023: Zenyth Innovations

We aim to reduce the harm caused by cement worldwide by using discarded sewage sludge ash and providing a cost-effective, carbon-negative partial substitute product that reinforces the quality of concrete […]

We aim to reduce the harm caused by cement worldwide by using discarded sewage sludge ash and providing a cost-effective, carbon-negative partial substitute product that reinforces the quality of concrete and builds structures to last.

SIA Finalist: Zenyth Innovations
SIA Finalist: Zenyth Innovations

How did you come up with the Idea for Zenyth Innovations and what does your project do?

When thinking about a business idea, we decided to take a look from afar and choose a topic, a walk of life that remains unaffected by day-to-day politics and news. It is how we stumbled upon the fact that regardless of whether a war is raging, or the winter is cold, people always must eat and drink. If they eat and drink, it is only natural that they will pay a visit to the toilet. We then followed the way all this material travels through the sewage system, with wastewater eventually being cleaned. After it is cleaned, sewage sludge remains, which, if incinerated leaves behind sewage sludge ash, a fine powdery substance. We then investigated possible uses and tried to think outside the box, and the combination of the two yielded our result: a cement additive made from sewage sludge ash to replace a part of cement in concrete, making the final product cheaper, stronger, and more sustainable. 

What is causing you sleepless nights at the moment?

At the moment most of our headaches are caused by the difficulty of acquiring sewage sludge ash, as it is hard to come by, especially in Austria and Hungary, however, working with our advisors, we are edging closer to acquiring it from multiple sources. 

How do you balance yourself?

We try to keep a good balance of hard work and fun, trying to get important things done, but still enjoy the process. It is hard to coordinate sometimes, as, especially in the summer, we are all in different parts of the world, and on different schedules, however, we make time for our meetings, where we take care of business, split tasks, and keep each other motivated and hungry for success. 

What impact does the project have on your environment? What SDGs does your project

Our contribution to the sustainable development goals can be aligned clearly: 

Goal 06: Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

By promoting the incineration of sewage sludge ash, we promote the modernisation of wastewater treatment facilities and clean water supplies all over the world. In order for us to grow, SDG 6 and our company align in building out the most sophisticated water cleaning processes all over the world, and not just the developed parts of Europe or North America. 

Goal 07: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all

In order to get the material for our product, we promote the incineration of sewage sludge at all sewage treatment facilities. This incineration results in electricity which the most optimal, and energy efficient way to dispose of sewage sludge.

Goal 09: Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation

Our innovative product is used to build to last using sustainable materials. Calling for innovation in a conservative environment like construction is exactly what our mission, and we believe we can achieve it with our product. This coupled with its structure and durability enhancing properties aligns it perfectly with SDG 9.

Goal 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

By introducing our product, we have a sustainable production cycle by using otherwise discarded materials that result from carbon negative processes. By selling our product, we provide the construction industry with the possibility of cleaning their production cycle, and reducing the amount of non sustainable materials they utilise

Goal 13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

We combat climate change by reducing the demand for cement, the material that is causing about 8% of global CO2 emissions. We also promote the use of clean energy by utilising the by-product of biogas production that would otherwise be discarded producing waste. By repurposing sewage sludge ash, we truly cover the entire cycle, drawing a direct line from human consumption to sustainable buildings.

Goal 17: Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development

With our idea, we hope to get the ball rolling in the right direction by calling attention to not only the fancy, hotly debated aspects of sustainability like electric cars and solar panels, but a largely forgotten and not very appealing area, which essentially is the final destination of human waste. In our efforts we seek to find partners on a global scale, who can help us optimize wastewater management processes not only in Europe, but in less developed countries as well. 

What does the finished project look like?

Our finished project is a cement additive product made from stabilized sewage sludge ash. This product is designed to achieve a win for both us, our customers, and the environment, and we are confident that through hard work and determination we can bring it to market and pave the way to a sustainable future.