This composite surface made of Nike Grind materials and an epoxy binder would serve as a recycled substitute for traditional laminate board.
The product could be used for a wide range of applications including but not limited to: countertops, tabletops, furniture, flooring, and cabinets.
For our submission we have chosen to showcase a scale model of one potential application, a table top for desks in classrooms ranging from elementary to college environments. These could even be made at a low cost and sent to impoverished areas and developing countries to assist in education efforts.
A composite such as this can be easily mass-produced as the simple process of mixing large quantities of materials and pressing them into molds is easily automated. Due to the similarities in production and physical properties between this composite surface and traditional laminate board, there is already an infrastructure in place to produce, distribute, and utilize this type of material. Therefore, it would not require as much investment to scale production as it would for a completely new, complex, or handmade product.
So far, we have been encouraged by the results of small scale prototyping using home-made Grind materials and wax as a binder. In further product development we hope to use real grind materials to experiment with different binders, develop production techniques, and perform testing to determine material properties.