Innovations for a Low-Carbon Circular Economy

Tuesday, 9 July - 10.30-11.30am

Free for WasteMINZ members and $49 plus GST for non WasteMINZ members

This 60-minute webinar will cover:  

1.  Introduction to Circular Innovations (CIRCUIT) Research Centre


2.  Digital Twins for Decarbonisation and Sustainable Process Design

This presentation will describe both research and teaching involving digital twins and design, respectively, in chemical and materials engineering relevant to circular economy.  It will first introduce work on developing digital twin tools to assist NZ process industries to decarbonize and develop circular approaches and ways of operating.  Sustainable capstone process design projects in chemical and materials engineering.  Application to and engagement with industry will be discussed in both topics. 

3.  Reducing the carbon footprint of concrete through circularity

Concrete has an immense impact in our environment, from the mining of our mountains, rivers, and beaches to the carbon footprint of cement production. Unfortunately, concrete is extremely cheap and versatile, and there is no viable alternative for many of its uses at the moment. Concurrently, large amounts of waste are being dispose of by just throwing them in the landfill, sometimes releasing powerful greenhouse gases in the process. The economic incentives for changing these two paradigms are starting to change, but it is still very early in that shift. My research focuses on identifying the synergies where these two problems overlap, by increasing the value of waste and diverting it from the landfill we aim to reduce the environmental impact of concrete, solving both a technical and economic problem through scientific rigour and industry and societal collaborations.


Saeid Baroutian


Executive Director, CIRCUIT Research Centre, The University of Auckland

Saeid holds the position of Professor and Deputy Head of Department (Research) within the Department of Chemical & Materials Engineering at the University of Auckland. Additionally, he serves as the Executive Director of the Circular Innovations (CIRCUIT) Research Centre, Chair of the Engineering Sustainability Committee, and Director of the Sustainable Resource Recovery postgraduate programme at the University of Auckland.  His research focuses on the development and design of innovative and sustainable technologies and methodologies tailored for the circular economy, resource recovery, and waste minimisation. Many of his research findings have been embraced by various companies, leading to real-world applications. 

Brent Young


Director, CIRCUIT Research Centre, The University of Auckland

Brent Young is a full Professor and Research Chair in the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering at The University of Auckland, NZ.  Brent has a BE and PhD in Chemical and Process Engineering from the University of Canterbury, NZ and 30+ years’ experience in academia and consulting in Australia, Canada and NZ.  A Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers UK and Engineering NZ he was the recipient of the 2014 Australasian Award of Excellence in Chemical Engineering (Teaching).  His expertise centres on two areas: 1) process modelling and digital twins, and 2) process development and design, with applications in circular economy, energy and food.

Enrique del Rey Castillo

Senior Lecturer

Director, CIRCUIT Research Centre, The University of Auckland

Enrique is a structural engineer with extensive experience in the seismic behaviour and strengthening of concrete structures, which was the topic of both his Master and PhD projects. He is currently a Senior Lecturer at the University of Auckland, where he combines his role as Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning with extensive research mainly related to strengthening and seismic behaviour of concrete structures and sustainability of concrete.