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PUNĀH is a Sanskrit term for “again”.
The Punāh Project is an initiative of Godrej & Boyce, one of India’s major manufacturing conglomerates, that focuses on re-thinking the definition, and the use of waste materials.
The project was brought to life in response to the various types and amounts of industrial waste generated by the manufacturing facilities throughout Godrej & Boyce

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The Story


India’s growing manufacturing ambition is going to bring global issues of excessive waste with it. In response to this, we at Godrej & Boyce, are moving towards a circular economy by considering industrial waste as a valuable resource.

We have adopted a unique approach, moving towards a more sustainable manufacturing practice by taking accountability of our own footprint and being transparent about waste generation. The Punāh Project, incubated by the ‘Innovation & Design Centre’ at Godrej & Boyce in India, was called to life in February 2015 to address these issues.

As initiators of the Punāh Project, our emphasis revolves around developing alternative applications for non-hazardous industrial waste through material design and research. Aiming to adopt a zero waste policy for Godrej & Boyce, we have been looking into ways of eliminating waste generation as well as rethinking the value of discarded materials.

On commencing our research we visited all 25 manufacturing facilities in order to rigorously document and categorise different types of waste. Subsequently we created a database with more than 600 materials. The factories’ waste streams proved to be a valuable material resource and a starting point for experimentation. The end products are results of extensive research in collaboration with the different manufacturing facilities at Godrej & Boyce as well as with skilled craftsmen and designers across India.

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Materials


Godrej & Boyce industries generates approximately 18,505 tonnes of ‘waste materials’ every year. These materials are generally down-cycled, sent to landfill and incinerators. Not only is this catastrophic for the environment but large quantities of materials that require highly sophisticated processes, copious amounts of energy and resources to get manufactured in the first place are wasted. Many of these materials have the potential to become a raw-material for other processes or products.

Metals


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Mild Steel

Mild steel contains less than 2 percent carbon and is found in almost every metal product as it is easy to weld, ductile, tough and malleable.

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Carbon Steel

Carbon steel is the most common type of steel in which the main alloying element is carbon and has the same properties as iron, soft but easily formed.

Metals3

Mixed Metals

This category consists of metal objects that have two or more types of metals present.

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Silicon Steel

Silicon steel is a steel that is specially tailored to produce certain magnetic properties. It is manufactured into cold-rolled strips that when assembled form the laminated core of transformers, stators or rotor parts of electric motors.

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Stainless Steel

Stainless steels are iron alloys with a minimum of 10.5% chromium and was developed for its resistance to oxidation. It is commonly used in the construction industry, household appliances and food service due to it’s attractive appearance, corrosion resistance, low maintenance and strength.

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Zinc & Ferran

Zinc is a chemical element with symbol Zn and is a bluish-white in tone, lustrous, a diamagnetic metal and a fair conductor of electricity. It is hard and brittle at most temperatures but becomes malleable between 100 and 150 °C.

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Aluminium

Aluminium is silvery-white non-magnetic chemical element in the boron group and has widespread use in the aerospace industry, in transportation and in construction. It has low density and therefore low weight, high strength, superior malleability, easy machining, excellent corrosion resistance and good thermal and electrical conductivity.

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Brass

Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc and is formulated in many variations. It is anti-microbial and due to its ability to generate very little friction between moving parts it has been used for centuries by horologists and locksmiths for components such as gears and bearings.

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Cast Iron

Cast iron is a group of iron-carbon alloys with a carbon content greater than 2% and have become a widely used engineering material due to it’s cast-ability, excellent machinability, resistance to deformation and wear resistance.

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Bronze

Bronze is an alloy consisting primarily of copper, commonly with about 12% tin and often with the addition of other metals. As a metal it is commonly used for ships' propellers, musical instruments, sculptures and electrical contacts.

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Copper

Copper is a chemical element with symbol Cu and atomic number 29. It is a soft, non-magnetic, non-ferrous, malleable and ductile metal with very high thermal and electrical conductivity used as building material as well as in the medical industry due to it’s anti-microbial properties.

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Galvanised steel

Galvanisation is the process of applying a protective zinc coating to steelto prevent corrosive substances from reaching the more delicate part of the metal.

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Mazak

Mazak alloy is an acronym of the materials: Zinc, Aluminium, Magnesiumand Copper. It has good casting ability, long-term dimensional stability making suitable for injection molding & die casting in large quantities with high precision and reproducibility of details.

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Nickel Silver

Silver Nickel is a copper alloy and commonly composed of 60% copper, 20% nickel and 20% zinc. It has a silvery appearance and is commonly used to make silver-plated cutlery, zippers, costume jewellery, musical instruments etc.

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Titanium

Titanium isstrong metal that is highly resistant to corrosion in sea water, aqua regia, and chlorine. It has low density, ductile, relatively high melting point, low electrical and thermal conductivity. It is commonly used as a pigment in paint, in aerospace & marine applications, in medical industry

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Metal Containers

Metal containers at Godrej & Boyce are often made of mild steel and used as a packaging for liquids such as oils, paints and solvents for different industries.

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Tin

Mainly obtained from the naturally occurring mineral cassiterite, Tin is a malleable and silvery metal that does not easily oxidise when exposed to air, is corrosion resistant and is highly conductive. It is an important material for the canning industry.

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Oils


An oil is a neutral, non-polar chemical liquid which is flammable and slippery. A thinner is a solvent used to thin oil-based paints or clean up after their use.

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Hydraulic Oils

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Thinner & Lubricating Oil

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Wood


Wood is an organic material with fibrous structural tissue found in the stems and roots of trees, and other woody plants. At Godrej & Boyce wood waste is commonly generated from the wooden pallets used in packaging.

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Packaging Wood

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Firewood

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Particle Boards

Wood4

MDF

Wood5

Charcoal

Wood6

Sawdust

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Chemical Waste


Chemical waste may be either a solid, liquid or a gaseous material which consists of harmful chemicals.The main characteristicsinclude ignitability, corrosivity, reactivity, and toxicity.

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Sludges

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Paper


Paper and cardboardare produced from cellulose pulp. At Godrej & Boyce they are predominantly used as office stationery, in packaging or as filter paper.

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Stationery waste

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Paper/Scraps

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Paper Cups

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Cardboard Boxes

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Tape Rolls

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Electrical & Electronic Waste


Electronic waste describes discarded electrical or electronic devices such as sockets, plugs, batteries, light bulbs, cables, printed circuit boards, electric contractor, sensors, etc.

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Switches

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Plug Sockets

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PCB's

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Cables

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Bulbs

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Batteries

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Glass


Glass is a hard, brittle substance, typically transparent or translucent. It is made by fusing sand with soda and lime. It is extremely stable, resistant to chemical attack and almost totally inert.

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Glass Panels

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Synthetic Materials


This group consists of various synthetic materials used to facilitate the storage and transport of raw materials. Typically these are plastic strips, thermocol, plastic sheets and other similar materials.

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Plastic Packaging

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Plastic Components

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Plastic Containers

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Grinding Scrap

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Plastic Tubes

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Liquid & Powder Paint Waste


Powder coating is a type of coating that is applied as a free-flowing, dry powder. It is mainly used for the coating of metals.

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Paint Sludges

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Epoxy Waste

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Personal Protective Wear


Personal protective equipment (PPE) refers to clothing that protects the body from physical injury. Helmets, goggles, gloves and safety shoes are part of the mandatory wear at Godrej & Boyce.

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Helmets

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Earplugs

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Visors

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Gloves

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Aprons

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Shoes

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Abrasive Waste


Abrasive materials are used in grinding machines to refine surfaces. These are generally made from a coarse-particle substance.

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Grinding Wheels

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Fabric Waste


Synthetic textile off-cuts are generated during the upholstery of furniture and the making of mattresses. Cotton rags are predominately used for cleaning and wiping during manufacturing processes at Godrej & Boyce.

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Cotton Waste

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Rags

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Lacing Thread

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Oil Soaked Fabric

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Synthetic Scraps

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Garbage


Paper cups and dust sweeping from factory floors are the main types of waste in this category.

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Paper Cups

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Plastic Bottles

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Plastic Scaps

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Dust Sweeping

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Construction


This category consists of scrap from construction projects that are currently in progress at Godrej & Boyce as well as waste materials generated during repair and maintenance work on the premises.

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Mild Steel Pipes

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Glass

Construction3

Sawdust

Construction4

Galvanised Scrap

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Tor Steel

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Wooden Scrap

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Concrete Waste

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Process


Material Exploration

We explore materials through experimental making, taking a closer look at it's natural properties and limitations. We look for simple solutions, keeping step-processes and energy consumption to a minimum whilst looking beyond conventional boundaries.

This section takes you through our material journey of research & making, starting with the 'raw' waste material through to the refined products and samples.

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Varnish

Transformation

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Magnet Copper Wire

Transformation

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Metal Turning Boring

Transformation

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Cotton Gloves

Transformation

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Exploration05

Synthetic Graphite

Transformation

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Exploration06

Crimping Pieces

Transformation

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Punah Project