Recycled Styrofoam as Insulation

Hi everyone, I am a grad student at Presidio Graduate School studying sustainability. My team and I are working on a project that aims to create building insulation made out of recycled styrofoam. Is there anyone on this forum that has any background knowledge or experience with insulation that they are willing to share? Or perhaps connect us with someone who does have experience with it?
Thank you so much!
-Leah Okrainsky

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Hi Leah,
Good to hear of your project! There is lots of room to innovate in this field of reducing embodied carbon in construction.
I would reach out to foam plastic insulation manufacturers for starting information. (XPS, EPS, and Poliyo insulation types) Lots of this type of insulation cannot be recycled. Are you thinking of actually the styrofoam that is used for food containers? I think sometimes a certain type of foam insulation is recycled into pellets for packing peanuts and I’ve seen it used under the slab for Energiesprung projects in the Netherlands.
A word of caution though. While we do need ways to reuse insulation that comes from demolition, we don’t want to continue to promote the use of recycled foam products, because that will keep them in production.
Good luck!