Potholes are not only a nuisance but they can also be very dangerous.
Regardless of where you live, we’ve all run across them (literally) and usually at the worst times.
Maybe you just got the little one to sleep or maybe you just got a nice, hot beverage and are dying to take a sip.
The. Worst. Moments.
There are an estimated 55 million potholes across America, alone.
Potholes are often “the result of water in the underlying soil structure and traffic passing over the affected area.”
Broken down, “Water first weakens the underlying soil; traffic then fatigues and breaks the poorly supported asphalt surface in the affected area. Continued traffic action ejects both asphalt and the underlying soil material to create a hole in the pavement.”
It sounds like there isn’t much that can be done. Rain cannot be stopped and people aren’t just going to stop driving completely!
But there is one possible solution that a young man from Mexico, Israel Antonio Briseño Carmona, pitched that won him the James Dyson Award earlier this year.
The award “is an international student design award that challenges young people to, ‘design something that solves a problem.'”
He says there are also tons of potholes in Mexico and he was inspired to help solve that issue.
“I was inspired to solve the problem that every time it rains in my city pavement gets damaged and it takes a lot of time to maintain a damaged street.”
Carmona is a student at Coahuila Autonomous University located in Saltillo, Mexico.
He admits that he isn’t the first to have come up with the idea of regeneration but his concept uses tires to do so.
It definitely sounds interesting.
“At present, there are already pavements that regenerate—but none use water as a means of regeneration … much less made of tires.”
The idea is that recycled tires are melted into a putty along with other additives. Rainwater then acts as a catalyst for regeneration so “the water spurs the road mixture to form calcium silicates that repairs itself.”
This is to replace the practice of rebuilding roads that deteriorate away due to inclement weather.
To help bring his idea to fruition, Carmona hopes to start his own construction company to implement his invention.
While he waits for approval from the Mexican government, he’s patented his idea in April under the name Paflec.
He’s also split the implementation of his invention into three phases.
“The first phase involves meeting with an engineer to “resolve doubts” about the project and then building a short section of road to ensure that it functions as envisaged. The second phase is to certify the construction system with the national building certification organization ONNCCE and the third phase is to gain approval from the Secretariat of Communications and Transportation.”
The invention sounds promising. Who knows, if his invention does well, maybe he’d be willing to expand it into other countries like the United States.
We sure could use it!
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