Staying ahead of the technology curve means strengthening your competitive advantage. That is why we give you data-driven innovation insights into the construction industry. This time, you get to discover 5 hand-picked startups developing biomaterials for construction companies.
Global Startup Heat Map highlights 5 Top Startups developing Biomaterials for Construction out of 580
The insights of this data-driven analysis are derived from the Big Data & Artificial Intelligence-powered StartUs Insights Discovery Platform, covering 2.093.000+ startups & scaleups globally. The platform gives you an exhaustive overview of emerging technologies & relevant startups within a specific field in just a few clicks.
The Global Startup Heat Map below reveals the distribution of the 580 exemplary startups & scaleups we analyzed for this research. Further, it highlights 5 biomaterials startups that we hand-picked based on criteria such as founding year, location, funding raised, and more. You get to explore the solutions of these 5 startups & scaleups in this report. For insights on the other 575 biomaterial solutions for construction, get in touch.
Plantation Bamboo provides Bamboo-based Interiors
While wood is a natural material, it is not a sustainable choice since the slow growth rate of hardwood trees fails to offset deforestation. Bamboo, on the other hand, is among one of the fastest-growing flora. It is mostly free from pests and diseases and requires less water than hardwood trees. Hence, startups are utilizing bamboo as an alternative for wood in interior construction works such as flooring, staircases, and wall coverings.
New Zealand-based startup Plantation Bamboo provides bamboo-based flooring, decking, and panels. The startup uses vertical layers of bamboo to make its flooring product, Bamboo Elite. Other variants include Compressed Bamboo for hard flooring and Bamboo Forest for carbon-neutral flooring. Plantation Bamboo also produces Bamboo UltraDensity for heavy-duty, semi-outdoor, or high-traffic commercial locations. Moreover, the startup uses sustainably forested bamboo in all its products to reduce its overall environmental impact and ensure sustainable indoor fittings.
HempWood provides Hemp-based Flooring
As the construction industry transitions to sustainability, the demand for bio-based construction materials is increasing. Apart from bamboo-based wood alternatives, hemp is another eco-friendly option for construction materials. It is harder than traditional oak and also grows faster. Additionally, hemp is capable of absorbing carbon from the atmosphere. It is also free of formaldehyde and does not emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs). As a result, startups are processing hemp to develop flooring and other construction materials.
HempWood is a US-based startup that makes eco-friendly hemp-based flooring and panels for cabinetry, tabletops, and accent walls. The startup breaks down raw stalks of hemp with high heat and pressure followed by the addition of a soy-based adhesive in its factory. HempWood then presses the hemp into plywood materials and finishes it with a non-toxic sealant. The application of an aluminum oxide further hardens the startup’s hemp-based wood. Moreover, the product takes on waxes and stains, making it suitable for creating vibrant highlighting features.
Ricehouse makes Biodegradable Plaster
Traditionally, plaster is made from either gypsum, cement, or sand. However, when it is mixed with water, plaster releases a lot of energy and reaches temperatures as high as 60-degrees Celsius, potentially causing skin burns. Also, conventional insulation materials like foams, plastic films, and fiberglass are non-biodegradable and contribute to solid waste. To address these issues, startups are creating bio-based substitutes utilizing rice husk, straw, and lime, among others. For example, the chemical composition and high silica content of rice husk make it resistant to insects, rotting, and mold formation.
Italian startup Ricehouse offers biodegradable insulation materials. The startup’s RH 200 biodegradable plaster comprises hydraulic lime and pure air lime. The use of rice husk, in combination with lime and marble dust, makes RH 200 stable to ultraviolet (UV) rays and offers high humidity evaporation capacities from existing walls. In addition, the startup uses rice husk and rice straw to make natural insulation materials with high breathability. They also develop other bio-based products such as a base coat, finishing plasters, and natural paints.
BioPowder manufactures Bio-based Additives
Like other sectors, construction also uses a lot of plastic which adds to pollution. For example, it uses polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), and polyurethane (PU) granules or powders in the formulation of additives for building materials. To reduce plastic waste, startups are developing bio-based additives obtained from fruit shells and stones. This helps construction companies avoid plastics in building materials while also satisfying the rising demand for toxin-free building materials.
Maltese startup BioPowder manufactures bio-additives from fruit stone powders. It uses olive stone powder to produce fiber compounds that reinforce flooring and roofing panels. Moreover, micronized olive stones reinforce fillers and enhance the porosity of brick and mortar items. The startup also offers ecological fillers obtained from almond and walnut shell powders as an alternative for polymers and calcium carbonate. Olive pit and walnut shell granules act as natural abrasives for surface cleaning, sanding, brightening, and smoothing. Low-density fibers, such as milled almond shells, pistachio shells, and olive stones, are useful as insulation materials in construction applications.
Calmura Natural Walls develops Biocomposites
Wall construction typically involves using plaster and toxic materials like asbestos, synthetic fibers, adhesives, and protective coatings. These materials adversely affect humans and the environment as they emit VOCs. Construction managers increasingly seek composites consisting of petrochemical resin and fiberglass or carbon fiber reinforcements. To avoid the use of such materials, startups are providing biocomposites that use natural fibers, such as wood chips instead of non-biodegradable components.
Canadian startup Calmura Natural Walls develops biocomposite solutions for walls, including solid panels and a foaming infill. The startup creates the panels by chipping waste wood resources and blending them with hydrated lime and clay binders to be cast into products. The binders absorb carbon dioxide as it cures to make a rock-encased wood-chip matrix. The startup then pumps the foaming biocomposite infill into the voids of the wall where it provides monolithic stability to the structure.
Discover more Construction Startups
Construction startups such as the examples highlighted in this report focus on biodegradable plasters, bio-based additives, biocomposites as well as biomaterial-based interiors. While all of these technologies play a major role in advancing the construction industry, they only represent the tip of the iceberg. To explore more construction technologies, simply get in touch to let us look into your areas of interest. For a more general overview, you can download our free Construction Innovation Report to save your time and improve strategic decision-making.