Students behind better waste sorting

Two BEng students have designed a cardboard lid for the waste containers used for DTU events with several thousand participants. The aim is to get visitors to sort their waste better, and tests show that it works.

Asmus Gram Hansen (right) and Niels Besser Mortensen's design has an inclined surface, so visitors cannot choose the solution of simply placing their waste on top of the waste container. Photo: Magnus Møller.

A satisfied partner

Asmus Gram-Hansen and Niels Besser Mortensen have taken over the basic design from a group of BEng students who participated in the Innovation Pilot course in summer 2023. The group developed the design as a solution to a case about better waste sorting at events that DTU Campus Service brought to the course, and Asmus Gram-Hansen and Niels Besser Mortensen have since optimized the design with colours and event-specific pictograms.


Innovation Pilot is an interdisciplinary and mandatory course for BEng students, where students collaborate to solve a case for a company.

Stine Rye Pedersen, Sustainability Employee at DTU Campus Service, is very satisfied with the design.

“It is a pleasure to work with Asmus and Niels to develop the product, and it is definitely not the last time we contribute with a case for the Innovation Pilot course. The students’ knowledge and creative approach is a huge resource, and they have the time to really immerse themselves in solving a problem,” she says.

Niels Besser Mortensen also knows exactly what makes the project special.

“The exciting thing about this project is that it will not just end up in a report—it will become a physical product that can be manufactured at a large scale, and which DTU Campus Service will hopefully be able to use at events for years to come. It’s not just going to be thrown away,” he explains.

The three project partners are in dialogue with a company about how the process from individual prototypes to large-scale production of the lid might look. The prototypes of the cardboard lid, which were tested at the Open House and DSE fair, are manufactured in the workshop and laboratory facilities in DesignBuildLab at Ballerup Campus.


The workshop and laboratory facilities at DTU in Ballerup cover all main areas within engineering and production. From concrete to plastics, robotics, electronics and health, including a 600 m2 prototype workshop for product development and prototype production.

The workshops and laboratories in DesignBuildLab are open to students around the clock to work on courses and projects. Companies can also gain access, among other things through cooperation and development projects.

Read more about DesignBuildLab on their website.


Mette Pallisgaard Jensen

Mette Pallisgaard Jensen Department of Engineering Technology and Didactics