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S-chair­—New biodegradable material for boards from nuts

Description: Peanuts and sunflower seeds are popular snacks in China. In daily life, nuts can be seen everywhere. One million tons of edible peanuts are sold over the New Year period alone, and the resulting nut waste is usually discarded and burned. Furniture used in daily life, such as tables and chairs, is made with a large number of chemical reagents. In addition, we all know that in the organic synthesis process produces by-products polluting the environment and these polymers are really difficult to be decomposed by nature. Therefore, we propose the use of waste nut shells with tea grounds, biodegradable plastics, etc. in order to develop new green materials. This not only reduces the generation of nut waste, but also save more chemical reagents. Besides that, the materials are biodegradable, so as to minimize the damage to the environment. Waste even can be turned into treasure, making use of everything and resources can be returned to the community.

Living on earth, taking from nature, have you ever thought that the vegetation on the earth is rapidly decreasing? People ignore many of the materials that can be reused or recycled, but have too much relying on materials made of trees. In daily life, the nut shells will be chosen to discard after eating nuts. In fact, nutshell is a kind of biomass resource which is rich in lignin, cellulose, hemicellulose and other substances. However, if we discard or burn it directly, it will produce a lot of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. Causing destroy for our ecological environment and consume a lot of public money, which is a very luxurious and extremely wasteful way of processing. Nut foods are within reach in daily life. According to statistics, the annual sales volume of nut foods in China is about 24.7 million tons. Especially during the Lunar New Year in China, the demand for nut foods has greatly increased. During merely the lunar year, China’s sales of edible peanuts reached 1 million tons, accounting for more than half of the total food sales in the Lunar New Year. Furniture used in daily life, such as tables and chairs, is made of a large number of chemical reagents. In the process of organic synthesis, by-products are produced and pollute the environment. These polymers are difficult to be decomposed naturally. In the light of above, we propose to regenerate nut shells, which people consider as garbage, into valuable items, such as biodegradable materials by adding suitable natural binders and natural antioxidants to improve the performance of the nut shell material and make the best use of it, at the same time, give full play to the maximum value of the nut shell resources. The process of the research is: Finding the appropriate concentration of natural binders→Finding the optimal ratio of natural antioxidants→Making nut shell materials→Testing the performance of nut shell materials. The results of this study strongly support our research is feasible, can turn waste into treasure, and minimize the damage to the ecological environment. In addition, we also discussed the reuse of the materials. The results also show that our materials can be reused and the performance is stable after reuse. The nutshell material which is eco-friendly, practical, and has good performance costs only 0.06 MOP, and it can also bring us considerable benefits. Economically, according to statistics, China’s annual sales of nut foods are about 24.7 million tons. If all of the nutshell are used as our nut shell materials, this will not only reduce the generation of these nut shell garbage, but also helping the Macau government save 2.62 million MOP of expenditure. Environmentally, we can reduce the damage to the ecological environment caused by the disposal of nut waste, which can save the earth an average of 4905.6 tons of carbon dioxide each year, which is equivalent to the average carbon dioxide absorption of 5.43 million trees in one day. In society, our nutshell material can cultivate the habits of people's resource recycling, and it can also establish a new understanding of nut waste. In the future, we will try to use different kinds of raw materials to produce various new environmentally friendly materials, promote our solutions to different fields; furthermore, upgrade and regenerate the nutshell materials.

Organisation: Keang Peng Secondary School

Innovator(s): CHAO KA IAN, LAM NGA SUN,WU KA WUI

Category: Environment

Country: Macau

Silver Award