University of Oulu

Yliniemi, J., Ramaswamy, R., Luukkonen, T., Laitinen, O., de Sousa, Á. N., Huuhtanen, M., & Illikainen, M. (2021). Characterization of mineral wool waste chemical composition, organic resin content and fiber dimensions: Aspects for valorization. Waste Management, 131, 323–330.

Characterization of mineral wool waste chemical composition, organic resin content and fiber dimensions : aspects for valorization

Saved in:
Author: Yliniemi, Juho1; Ramaswamy, Rajeswari1; Luukkonen, Tero1;
Organizations: 1Faculty of Technology, Fibre and Particle Engineering Research Unit, University of Oulu, PO Box 4300 90014, Finland
2CloverStrategy, Lda, Inst, Pedro Nunes, Ed.C, Rua Pedro Nunes, 3030-199 Coimbra, Portugal
3Faculty of Technology, Environmental and Chemical Engineering, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4300, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 7.7 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-08-17


Despite mineral wool waste is only a small fraction of total construction and demolition waste (CDW) by mass, it requires large transportation and landfilling capacities due to its low bulk density, and its utilization remains low compared to other CDW types. It is essential to understand the physical and chemical properties of this waste fraction in order to utilize it, e.g. as fiber reinforcement in composites or as supplementary cementitious material. Here, we provide a chemical and physical characterization of 15 glass wool and 12 stone wool samples of different ages collected from various locations across Europe. In addition, the chemical compositions of 61 glass and stone wool samples obtained from the literature are presented. Glass wool samples show little variation in their chemical composition, which resembles the composition of typical soda-lime silicate glass. Stone wool presents a composition similar to basaltic glass but with variability between samples in terms of calcium, magnesium, and iron content. Potentially toxic elements, such as Cr, Ba, and Ni, are present in mineral wools, but in low concentrations (<0.2%). Both wool types contain organic resin, which may decompose into smaller molecular fragments and ammonia upon heating or contact with alkaline solution. Mineral wool wastes have relatively similar length and width distributions, despite the age and type of the mineral wool. Overall, both mineral wool waste types have homogenous chemical and physical properties as compared to many other mineral wastes which makes their utilization as a secondary raw material promising.

see all

Series: Waste management
ISSN: 0956-053X
ISSN-E: 1879-2456
ISSN-L: 0956-053X
Volume: 131
Pages: 323 - 330
DOI: 10.1016/j.wasman.2021.06.022
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 216 Materials engineering
Funding: H2020 project Wool2Loop has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 821000. The opinions expressed in this document only reflect the authors’ view and in no way reflect the European Commission’s opinions. The European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains. Special thanks for sampling at demolition sites in Belgium to Recycling Assistance bvba. Juho Yliniemi and Tero Luukkonen have received funding from the Academy of Finland (grant # 322786 and # 326291, respectively). This work is also supported by the Academy of Finland InStreams profiling (grant #326291).
EU Grant Number: (821000) WOOL2LOOP - Mineral wool waste back to loop with advanced sorting, pre-treatment, and alkali activation
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 322786
Detailed Information: 322786 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Dataset Reference: The raw and processed data required to reproduce these findings are available to download from:
Copyright information: © 2021 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (