Projects by the students of the
Bachelor Major in Art, Major in Design,
and the Master in Eco-Social Design

Eggstone

Lecturer/s
Course topic/s
Course/s

MA Practice Based Course

Year

2022

semester

WHAT IS EGGSTONE

 

This clay-like biomaterial is made of eggshells, water, gelatin, and glycerine. It works as an alternative to limestone while repurposing organic waste. It can be extruded, cast into a mold, or dried as a thin and organic-shaped stiff surface, as well as engraved.

 

Do we fully appreciate the value of calcium?

 

Calcium is the fifth most abundant element on Earth and the world’s building block. Most of us are familiar with the idea that our bodies need calcium “to make our bones strong”. In fact, many organisms use calcium to build the structures that house and support them – skeletons, eggshells, mollusk shells, coral reefs, and the exoskeletons of krill and other marine organisms. And calcium is also the key ingredient in man’s most important structural material – cement. Its main component, limestone, contains above 80% of calcium carbonate, a common form of calcium, which stability makes it a durable construction material.

When experimenting with my organic food waste, I realized that the hard, outer covering of an egg offers possibilities as a substitute for limestone and other building materials, due to its high content in calcium carbonate. The rest is made up of protein and other minerals. The food industry makes this material easily available, and its potential should be explored.

As a further development, it would be interesting to obtain an eggshell-based material that can be 3D printed. At the moment, this is not possible because the mixture takes too long to dry.

 

HOW TO MAKE IT

 

Ingredients

80 g water

12 g gelatin

30 ml eggshell

10 g glycerin

 

Tools

Blender or coffee grinder

Scale

Pot

Stove

Spoon (to stir)

Mould (silicone, non-stick material, no cardboard), oven paper or non-stick material

 

Process

1)     blend fully dried shells until they become a thin powder

2)     dissolve the gelatin in hot water, then add the rest of ingredients (glycerin and eggshell powder)

3)     heat the mixture on low power in a pot while steady stirring, until the mixture becomes thicker

4)     cast mixture into a silicone/coated paper mold or apply to a non-stick surface

5)     let it dry at room temperature

 

Difficulty: 1

 

Duration: 30 minutes for preparing and up to 15 days to have a completely dry product.