The house of the future could be built with dirty diapers

A person stands on a platform next to a small house under construction.
A demo home made with diapers in the construction materials. | Image: Anjar Primasetra

Dirty diapers could actually become a cheap and sustainable construction material. As strange as it might sound, discarded diapers can be sterilized and reused in concrete and mortar, new research says. Doing that has the potential to tackle some big environmental problems, such as cutting down on pollution from construction and landfills.

“One baby in a day can [use] four or five pairs of diapers … you can image the waste diapers can produce in just one country,” says Siswanti Zuraida, lead author of the research published last week in the journal Scientific Reports and a PhD student in architectural engineering at the University of Kitakyushu in Japan.

Zuraida didn’t have to imagine; she used her own baby’s dirty diapers to build a…

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