Copper8 co-winner of the ‘Digital and Circular’ Competition

on 19 June 2019

Roetz Bikes and Excess Materials Exchange have won the ‘Digital and Circular’ competition, from the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area. Supervised by the City of Amsterdam as a contracting authority and prepared by the Amsterdam Economic Board, the competition was organized to help circular initiatives, which are still in their infancy, to further develop their innovations. A total amount of €750,000 is attached to the competition.

Linking supply and demand for residual materials
Excess Materials Exchange is a platform that allows companies to exchange residual flows in a way that is easy and smart. Currently, it is still very difficult for companies to give raw materials that are normally thrown away – such as plastic, paper and organic waste – a new purpose. With the help of the amount won, a smart system will be developed that links the supply and demand of residual materials. The platform puts a big focus on the quality and composition of the material, so that it can be used again for production processes and can therefore be reused in a high-quality manner. Excess Materials Exchange has formed a consortium together with Copper8 and Alba Concepts to develop four modules that offer a holistic solution for scaling up to a circular economy.

Modular smart bikes
Roetz Bikes has developed an innovative circular method, called ‘smart modular design’, in which waste prevention is considered during the design of a product. Roetz has been making bicycles for some time, and ‘reusable and removable design’ is central. The next step is a bicycle made up of different modules that can each be assembled, exchanged, maintained and reused or updated independently. Technology plays an important role in this: through sensors, information is collected about the use and condition of the modules (and their raw materials), enabling, for example, early maintenance to be carried out. The material is always reused in a closed system with a high-value result, so waste is no longer a consideration. Roetz’s idea is to operate a bicycle fleet with an intelligent ‘fleet management system’. In order to maximize the fleet’s lifespan, Roetz retains ownership of and responsibility for the maintenance of the bicycles.

Accelerate innovations
The competition aims to encourage the market to design a digital application that facilitates, accelerates and scales up the implementation of smart solutions (in various sectors, starting within the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area, then moving further afield). The intention is that products, parts, materials and raw materials can be used permanently and with the highest possible value. This way, in the future we will become less dependent on increasingly scarce resources, and we will reduce the amount of waste we’re producing.

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