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Green Slurry Could Go Nationwide

From the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology For immediate release

GREEN SLURRY COULD GO NATIONWIDE

Massey University students have developed a new resurfacing compound for a Manawatu company that could help make cycling safer in communities nationwide.

Higgins Contractors Ltd hired the students through the Technology for Industry Fellowship scheme to develop a non-slip, green-coloured slurry. The slurry - a combination of sand, binders and colouring - has been successfully trialed on a key cycleway in Palmerston North. The new surface reduces slipping in most weather conditions and is brightly coloured to clearly identify it from the main roadway. Higgins product development technician Sean Bearsley says the company is now looking at further testing of the product for added durability and for applications other than cycleways. "Minor modifications to the formulation will allow us to use the product for resurfacing tennis courts and driveways," Mr Bearsley says. Fourth-year student Allan Forbes undertook research into the first generation product as part of his bachelor of technology study. A second student, Kelly Sheppard, helped reformulate the compound last summer. Although initially produced in green, Ms Sheppard expanded the product range to include 12 colours. Mr Forbes says that he undertook initial market and feasibility investigations into the product concept, with an emphasis on developing the product for driveways, sports courts and carparks. The local city council expressed an interest in the product as a method for making the cycle lanes more visible to other road users. "The Technology for Industry Fellowship scheme is brilliant because it is an excellent avenue for business to get worthwhile research work done, and students like me get some real work to do," Mr Forbes says. "I learnt a lot from the project work and it helped give me a kick-start into a career." The scheme is operated by the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology. Mr Forbes is now working fulltime at Higgins undertaking further product testing and research work. -ends-

Contact: * Sean Bearsley, Higgins Contractors Ltd. Ph: (06) 357-1026. Email: sbearsley@higgins.co.nz * Allan Forbes. Ph: (06) 350-0144. Email: aforbes@higgins.co.nz * Tony Hadfield, Technology New Zealand at the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology, (04) 917-7800 or 025 454-095. Website: www.technz.co.nz Tony Hadfield Prepared on behalf of the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology by ID Communications. Contact: Ian Carson (04) 477-2525, ian@idcomm.co.nz


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