Navigation Links
Plan to turn farm waste into paper earns students $15,000
Date:11/12/2012

Johns Hopkins engineering students won $15,000 in a national competition for adapting a traditional Korean paper-making technique into a low-tech method that impoverished villagers can use to make paper for their children's underequipped schools.

The prize -- for the design of a machine to convert farm waste to paper, inexpensively and without electricity -- was presented recently in Houston during a ceremony honoring top submissions in the 2012 Odebrecht Award for Sustainable Development competition. The contest attracted 422 student entrants from 173 universities. The paper-making proposal took second place.

Students Sangkyun Cho, Jay Hyug Choi and Victor Hyun Oh developed the plan last spring in a Whiting School of Engineering course called Introduction to Engineering for Sustainable Development, taught by Erica Schoenberger, a professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering.

"Everyone in class knew that this team had come up with such a neat idea, and the three students worked on it in great detail," said Schoenberger, who attended the award ceremony with the team members. "I think it's more and more the case that young engineers want to turn their talents and skills to improving the lives of the poor and the excluded. This team is a shining example of that trend."

Student entrants in the Odebrecht contest were required to develop and submit a paper on possible engineering contributions to sustainable development. The Johns Hopkins students focused on the lack of basic school supplies, including paper, in developing nations such as Ethiopia, where more than 70 percent of the population is illiterate.

"Stationary supplies are simply too expensive for millions of families that live on less than $2 a day, and this is one of many socioeconomic factors that contribute to plummeting elementary school attendance rates and poor learning environments," the students wrote in their entry.

To remedy this, the three students drew on their Korean heritage to modernize a traditional Korean paper-making process for use in places such as Ethiopia. The students prepared a detailed design for a low-cost paper-making device that requires no electricity. The machine grinds up agricultural waste such as grain husks and mixes the material with water boiled over a fire. The resulting pulp is dried on racks to form paper.

So far, the paper-making device exists only on paper. But the students now plan to build a prototype. If the machine works as conceived, team member Oh said, the students will look into working with a nonprofit group or private investors to try to move the low-tech invention into regions where school supplies are scarce. "These people have a very real need," he said. "While we love our idea, we hope that the project continues to move forward for their sake, not so much ours."

Oh completed his undergraduate studies last spring and is now pursuing a master's degree in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. His teammate Cho is now a senior, majoring in chemical and biomolecular engineering. Team member Choi is a junior, majoring in applied mathematics and statistics.


'/>"/>
Contact: Phil Sneiderman
prs@jhu.edu
443-287-9960
Johns Hopkins University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Superbug MRSA identified in US wastewater treatment plants
2. More than 70% of electronic waste management is uncontrolled
3. Waste cooking oil makes bioplastics cheaper
4. Glass offers improved means of storing UKs nuclear waste
5. New method to remove phosphorous from wastewater
6. A new energy source: Major advance made in generating electricity from wastewater
7. Using wastewater as fertilizer
8. Waste to watts: Improving microbial fuel cells
9. Where to put nuclear waste?
10. Ethical trade: Good intentions go to waste
11. The first pilot wastewater treatment plant with integrated wood production opened in Mongolia
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/26/2016)... 2016 Research and Markets has ... Market 2016-2020"  report to their offering.  , ,     ... The analysts forecast the global multimodal biometrics market ... the period 2016-2020.  Multimodal biometrics is ... as the healthcare, BFSI, transportation, automotive, and government ...
(Date:4/15/2016)... DUBLIN , April 15, 2016 ... of the,  "Global Gait Biometrics Market 2016-2020,"  report ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160330/349511LOGO ) , ,The global gait ... CAGR of 13.98% during the period 2016-2020. ... movement angles, which can be used to compute ...
(Date:3/31/2016)... 31, 2016   ... the "Company") LegacyXChange is excited to release ... soon to be launched online site for trading 100% ... ) will also provide potential shareholders a sense of ... to an industry that is notorious for fraud. The ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/4/2016)... York, NY (PRWEB) , ... May 04, 2016 ... ... has leveraged recent innovations in biotechnology to help treat hormonal and stress related ... loss, Nutrafol® has captured the hearts of key opinion leaders in the medical ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... 03, 2016 , ... Leading CEOs from biotech, pharmaceutical, and ... June 1st at The Four Seasons Hotel Boston. , The Boston CEO Conference ... exclusive access to key decision makers who influence deal making and investment. Attendees ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... 2016 - And Other Rising ... of Those Competitor Biologics  - Biosimilar Drug ... Prospects ,  Who are the most important ... are their sales potentials? Discover, in our updated survey, ... opportunities and revenue forecasting. Visiongain,s ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... YORK , May 2, 2016 ... announces that its technology partner Mannin Research Inc. will ... Ophthalmology (ARVO), which takes place from May 1-5, 2016 ... executives will be meeting with its vendors and research ... explore business development goals and other collaborative opportunities for ...
Breaking Biology Technology: