Author Topic: Ontario high school student develops way to decompose plasti  (Read 2680 times)

Debra

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Burd discovered that approximately 500 billion plastic bags are used worldwide each year. Billions of these end up in the oceans, where they are ingested by animals that often die as a result.

He also learned that plastic bags can take anywhere between 20 and 1,000 years to decompose - numbers in which Burd found unlikely inspiration.

Burd's hypothesis was that if plastic bags do eventually break down, it should be possible to isolate and concentrate the micro-organism responsible for the decomposition, thus speeding up the process.

To test his hypothesis, Burd took a few soil samples from a local landfill and mixed them with polyethylene, the substance used to make plastic bags, as well as a solution to encourage bacterial growth. After concentrating the solution several times and incubating it for 12 weeks, Burd took the resulting bacterial culture and tested it on strips of polyethylene.

After six weeks, the strips had lost more than 17 per cent of their weight compared to a set of control strips.

http://nbbusinessjournal.canadaeast.com ... cle/346856
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skdadl

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Re: Ontario high school student develops way to decompose plasti
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2008, 08:10:21 AM »
Smart kid.  :applause:

I hope that no profiteering sharks steal the idea from him and patent it. That others should work in this research direction, ok. But American researchers leap to patents very fast.

jrootham

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Re: Ontario high school student develops way to decompose plasti
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2008, 10:10:12 AM »
The truly annoying thing  is that if it is not patented it will not be produced.

 

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