Cycling while Charging, the Power of Bicycle Charger

Photo by: Jeremiah Murimi

Photo by: Jeremiah Murimi

Bicycle serves as a main method of transportation in the Philippines. Based on 2013 National Labor Force Survey, 37.917 million or 87 % Filipino labor force choose bicycle as the primary mode of transportation according to Rep. Samuel Pagdilao. Biking does not only promotes health and leisure but can be an alternative solution to the high prices of fuel, fares, traffic, noise and air pollution. Also, mobile phone electricity charges can be now saved through cycling. Cycling while Charging, the power of bicycle charger.


The bicycle charger was an innovation made by the undergraduate students of University of Nairobi namely, Pascal Katana and Jeremiah Murimi. The wind is the alternative energy source. It was made out of the idea to use rotation motion of a bicycle wheel to generate electricity using a dynamo. Dynamo is a type of alternator in generating electricity for lighting a small lamp. Once the wheel is rotated, current is induced in coils of copper wire under the influence of a rotating magnetic flux, generated by alternate shifting of magnets to north and south poles which is also known as the fundamental principles of electromagnetism. The charger is made of recycled materials e.g radio parts computer electronic components etc. The market cost of the kit were estimated at Ksh 150 or Php 67.19, however it may vary to the economies of scale in mass production.

Benefits of the innovation

  • It can promote employment and revenue.
  • It can promote sufficient power to charge phones in areas without electricity.
  • It reduces over-reliance on electricity to charge phones.
  • It eliminates the regular cost of charging phones.
  • It can boost consumption of local products and innovation.



The Use of Recyclable Thermoset to cut landfill Waste

The Use of Recyclable Thermoset to cut landfill Waste

Philippines are a flood prone country, and one of the reasons is lots and lots of plastics in the garbage. We are a populated country so the higher the population the higher the demand of needs.

Plastics are non-biodegradable. It took thousands of years before it completely destroyed and broken down into very small parts by natural processes, bacteria, etc. Plastics are usually the reasons of floods because it clogs the drainage that stops the water flowing in the canal that can cause a flood. Due to the durability of the plastics it is now the vital part of our modern world, every move we make we are using it, like for example we are using plastics in the grocery store because paper bag alone cannot carry out the heaviness of our groceries; our garbage bag itself is a plastic, mobile phones and circuit boards to the aerospace industry.

By Bernard Meyerson

Plastics are divided into thermoplastics and thermoset plastics.  Thermoplastics are generally recyclable, so it can be heated and reshaped many times, it can be seen everywhere. This one is thin and soft plastics like our plastic cups, plastic bottles, etc. So even at home, we can make our own shape of thermo plastics through heating it and form of what shape we want. However thermoset plastics can only heated and shaped once, after which molecular changes mean they are cured, retaining their shape and strength even when subject to intense heat and pressure, so these kind of plastic is hard and it capable to lasts longer like thousands of years. We can commonly use this as drawer, plates, comb and other basic equipment’s inside the house.


In 2014, publication of a landmark paper in Science announcing discovery of new classes of the thermosetting polymers that are recyclable which is the Poly (hexahydrotriazine)s, or PHT’s. It dissolved in the strong acid and breaking apart the polymer chains into component monomers that can then be reassembled into new products.

Like unrecyclable thermosets, this is also rigid, easily melt and tough, with the same potential applications as their unrecyclable forerunners. This innovation – if widely deployed – can speed up the move of circular economy, and with a big reduction of plastics landfill wastes even though no recycling is 100 percent efficient.

In order for us to reduce landfill wastes we can recycle our used materials. Plastic bottle is one of the examples. After drinking we can use it as a vase in our home through decorating it and make it more attractive, we can also use it as a pot for our plant, etc.

Garbage is everywhere and we can use them if we are using our creativity in recycling. Since plastic is biodegradable and lasts longer than our lives we can use them in daily living not just to reduce wastes but also to make our environment clean.





Pregnancy Type Test Kit For Dengue Positivity



Various deceases and viruses has become a widespread issue in other nations and also in our country today. It has been categorized unto its levels of effect to the health of the people and the cause of how it is being acquired. Some can be cured through immediate medication and random set of test’s, but some doesn’t have remedies but can be prevented, this is because to its undefined symptoms and effect to the body of a certain person. One of the alarming viruses that has been unto several cases here in the Philippines is the Dengue.


The Dengue is a viral infection transmitted by the bite of an infected female Aedes mosquito. This can be cause by any one of four closely related dengue viruses. The mosquito becomes infected when it bites a person with dengue virus in their blood. It can’t be spread directly from one person to another person. Symptoms appear in 3–14 days average 4–7 days after the infected bite. Some of this symptoms may include:

Dengue fever is like a normal flu-like illness that affects infants, young children and adults.There is no specific treatment for dengue fever. Severe dengue is a potentially fatal complication, but early clinical diagnosis and careful clinical management by experienced physicians and nurses often save lives. This has been also the cause of the rapid number of children being hospitalized every year.

The Philippine’s exposure to dengue cases has become an alarming situation in the country. According to the National Epidemiology Center of the Philippines’ the Department of Health reports a total of 59,943 dengue cases from January 1 to September 6,2014. This is 59.57% lower compared to last year (148,279). Of the total cases, 10.47% came from Northern Mindanao Region X, 9.6% from CARAGA Region XIII, 9.19% from Davao Region Region 11.from Region IV-A and , Region III, which are 8.93% and 8.01% respectively, to the overall figure.

As an immediate response to the rapid spread of the Dengue virus into the body and to assure the case of the infected person , a product of study was made  by the Research and Biotechnology Division of the St. Luke’s Medical Center with the help of the Department of Science and Technology DOST,  they developed a “point-of-care” test for dengue meant to be simple enough to be done even by people without medical training.



The pregnancy type test kit for dengue is like a pregnancy test kit, but it is just only for dengue. Just place a few drops of blood into a plastic wand, and you can see if you’re positive after 15 minutes. Like in the ordinary off-the-shelf pregnancy test, a strip of specially-treated materials soaks up the fluid and changes color in the presence of specific chemicals.

According to Dr. Mark Pierre Dimamay one of the members of the research team, the problem with dengue is that its most common symptom fever is usually shrugged off by sufferers, delaying medical attention. It’s only when the fever persists for three or four days that people decide to consult a doctor. But by then, the dengue will already have progressed so time is of the essence.Dengue should not be a fatal disease, it only becomes deadly when treated too late or not treated at all.
While it is too early for them to tell how much this device might cost, the  research team is hoping that it is around the cost of a pregnancy test since they are similar in format.

A prototype of the product has already been produced, with field testing scheduled for next year.

How it works

The dengue test prototype is designed to detect dengue even in its earliest stages, well before the breakout of any tell-tale fever. 

The test involves two strips: one that detects the dengue virus itself in the earlier stages of contamination, and another that reacts to the antibodies produced after virus numbers have subsided. 

This is because, once the dengue virus enters a person, it multiplies until it reaches a peak level; this is when the symptoms, like fever, start to manifest. But after the fourth day of contamination, virus numbers drop as the body counterattacks by producing antibodies which determines the number of weeks being infected. 

So the test works by detecting both the virus and the antibodies produced in its wake.

Other existing methods

A similar device called the Rapid Dengue Test is already available in the market. Unlike the point-of-care prototype of the St. Luke’s team, it only detects the antibodies against dengue, which appear in the blood four to five days after the onset of fever.

Yet another device called the Dengue NS1 Ag Strip is being used by some hospitals to test early dengue infection. However, it still won’t fit the ideal point-of-care test, because its end-users are still healthcare professionals: The patients cannot perform this test by themselves.Methods for diagnosing dengue like the Nucleic Acid Amplification, serological methods, and virus isolations require technical expertise and a lot of time, which don’t make them ideal point-of-care screening tools for general feversThese methods need a laboratory and specialized equipment, plus the technical expertise of the people performing the tests. These methods would also take at least half a day to finish, according to Dr. Dimamay.

As the rapid number of people being hospitalized every year due to dengue, the innovation like the pregnancy type test kit for dengue can be an immediate tool in determining the direct case of the symptoms being undergone by the person. This could also determine the antibodies as to how long the body has been infected by the virus. And such, person suffering with such symptoms could immediately know his/her case and that it could be treated as soon as possible by the medical experts, so that the virus could be detected and can somehow be prevented in spreading. This is also a way in preventing sudden deaths of people due to dengue, because in just a number of minutes you could already determine if your positive of dengue or not. Because, in cases like dengue “Early prevention is a must”. 

By: Sarah Mae Arante

References & Sources

Pictures from

AdSoy Blend: 2-in-1 Health Product

According to the conclusion of a study conducted by Kantar Worldpanel, a leading provider of researched-based information on shoppers’ purchase and usage behavior in several countries, Filipino are becoming more health-conscious. In 2010, Filipinos were increasingly becoming health-conscious buying healthy foods, with 93 percent, up from 83 percent in 2005. In this study, Filipino consumers learned to read the labels, with 90 percent making sure they were getting really healthy foods before buying. Products such as ready-to-drink teas, coffees, and cereal beverages claiming at the top three spots, found that convenience had become a valued consideration for Filipinos from the study conducted. Researchers from Cordillera Administrative Region Integrated Agricultural Research Center (CIARRC) of the Department of Agriculture (DA) developed a food product that combines both convenience and health benefits. And the product called “AdSoy Blend”.

Adsoy: 2-in-1 Health Product

Stated by Dr. Magdalena T. Wanawan, CIARC manager, AdSoy blend come up with the name that will capture both commodities: Adlay and soybean and the product could have been called “AdSoy” or “Solai”. AdSoy is a mixed cereal meal and hot beverage. AdSoy aim was to develop a product that targets the health-conscious Filipinos with great consideration on the ease of preparing it; especially to those people who are busy and always in a hurry. Roasted adlay grains and roasted soybeans are the main ingredients of AdSoy blend. To add a flavor to a blend you can also add a dash of roasted sesame seeds. If you want to use AdSoy as a cereal food, you have to add hot water, milk, and sugar to taste. If you want to use it as a tea or hot beverage, you have to add more hot water or milk and sugar. According to Dr. Wanawan, they did not add sugar into the blend because some diabetic patients drink it without the sugar.

Stated by Dr. Magdalena T. Wanawan, the product was developed in April 2014 and was first introduced to the public during the National Agriculture and Fisheries Technology Forum and Product Exhibition, organized by the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR) in August 2014 at SM Megatrade Hall, SM Megamall. Funding for this CIARC’s research initiative is part of the Adlay R&D fund from BAR. What makes AdSoy different from other cereal meal and hot beverage products? Dr. Wanawan revealed that, “Adsoy is organic! The blend contains adlay and soybeans which are both organically-grown here. Kami talaga sa CIARC ay maka-organic! [We at CIARC are into organic!]”. Adsoy has been already been introduced to the public through tech for. They are still perfecting the product in terms of taste and consistency. “We need to improve on the taste by conducting public taste test and also improve the product packaging,” said Dr. Wanawan.

Featured image

Photo by: Cordillera Integrated Agricultural Research Center

Healthful Benefits from AdSoy

“We developed it because of the health benefits from adlay and soybean. Both are high in nutrients, containing both energy and protein which are essential needs of our body. Another reason is that both crops are easy to grow and produce,” explained Dr. Wanawan. One of the components of AdSoy Blend is Adlay or Job’s Tears, are medicinal herb and popular food, famous by its dampness-removing feature. It can also help to eliminate excessive dampness inside the body and invigorate the spleen, improving metabolism. Lung related chronic diseases such as emphysema, cough, and asthma can also cure by Job’s tears. Adlay is versatile as rice, as source of food. According to the studies, eating 100 grams per serving of adlay, one is less likely to feel hungry after awhile compared to eating rice or corn. In modern research showed that Job’s tears is an anti-cancer food because it has a functions of immunization reducing blood sugar and blood pressure, inducing ovulation and etc. The other component of AdSoy blend is the soybean, considered as the highest protein content among the plant product. It contains 40 percent of protein and the only vegetable food that contains all 8 essential amino acids.

Rose Mary Aquino, senior agriculturist at the DA-Cagayan Valley Integrated Agricultural Research Center (CVIARC) in Region 2, citing that soybean is known as a good source of dietary fiber and it contains anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory factors, and components that aid in the prevention of osteoporosis, heart diseases, and diabetes. It is locally known as utaw, has a great potential in helping alleviate hunger and poverty in the country because it can be widely used to meet the protein need of the Filipino.


Pregnant woman, especially in their early stage cannot eat Job’s tears or adlay. Research in animals suggests that it can poison a developing embryo. It can also cause the uterus to contract, and this might harm the pregnancy. And also people with constipation or perspiration cannot eat Job’s tears. Soy phytoestrogens disrupt endocrine function and have the potential to cause infertility and to promote breast cancer in adult women. Soybeans also contain haemagglutinin, a clot-promoting substance that causes red blood cells to clump together. Soybeans are high in phytic acid, a substance that blocks the uptake of the essential minerals calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and especially zinc, in the intestinal tract.


Dengue Prevention Trap

Introduction Dengue also known as breakbone fever is a mosquito-borne disease that already killed thousands of lives. It is caused by any one of four closely related dengue viruses and transmitted by the bite of mosquito within the genus Aedes, principally A. aegypti. It is characterized by headache, severe joint pain and a rash. Each year, an estimated 100 million cases of dengue occur worldwide and in our country it is reported as a leading cause of childhood hospitalizations. As of now, there are no specific remedies for a dengue virus; you can only prevent the spreading of it. Prevention is done by controlling A. aegypti by eliminating its habitats and protection from the bites of mosquitoes that spreads it. To help reduce the reproduction of dengue carrying mosquitoes, the Department of Science and Technology through its Industrial Technology Development Institute (ITDI) developed the Mosquito Ovicidal/Larvicidal Trap or OL trap.   Aedes_mosquito   Description The OL trap system have three important parts. First is the black cup which has a DOST logo, a popsicle stick-like strip of lawanit (coconut husk wall paneling) measuring 1″x6.5″ for mosquitoes to lay their eggs on, and a larvicide solution that will kill the larvae if it will hatch in the lawanit and in the solution. When the kit materials are placed in areas known to be the breeding place of mosquitoes, the scent of the solution attracts female Aedes aegypti to lay their eggs on the lawanit stick. While the trap does not kill the mosquito, it kills the hundreds of eggs that it lays. The trap’s crucial component is the pepper-based solution developed by leading Filipino entomologists and DOST scientists. The OL trap’s effect is to prevent the next generation of mosquitoes to develop so it will curb the Aedes mosquito population.   The DOST OL Trap System The main component of this OL trap is the solution made from natural active ingredient which is safe to humans but is pestilent to mosquitoes. After careful study and research and field testing of the OL trap in Quezon City and Marikina City, DOST partnered with the Department of Health (DOH) in its nationwide launching. What’s good with this OL trap system is that it is effective in attracting Aedes mosquitoes and lethal to hatched larvae. It is also safe, inexpensive and make-use of natural active agent. How It Works The reason why the cup is black is because mosquitoes are attracted to dark colors, so it attracts Aedes mosquitoes to lay their eggs on the lawanit stick. The trap creates optimum conditions for this species to lay its eggs: stagnant, clean, clear water, dark area and damp rough surface. The eggs will either be trapped in the lawanit stick or it will end up in the organic larvicide solution wherein they will be killed before they transform ito an adult Aedes mosquitoes. Steps in Using the OL Trap System 1. Fill the cup with tap water up to the lined mark of the DOST logo (250 ml). 2. Pour 1 pack of  pellets in the cup and make sure to stir thoroughly to make sure it is dissolved well. 3. Put the lawanit stick in the solution with the rough surface up. You can use the stick to dissolve the pellets. 4. Place 1 cup each in the dark and low-lying area inside and outside of your house. Make sure not to spill the contents and most importantly keep out of reach of children and animals. 5. Collect the trap and note for the following on the sixth day.

  • Eggs on the paddle
  • Live larva/pupa
  • The presence of even one larvae indicates a positive trap

6. After six days, gently brush off the stuck eggs in the lawanit stick into the solution. Pour boiling water into the container and dispose all the liquid content of the cup in a dry ground. A packet of a specially formulated pellets is good for 1 week before it needs to be replaced again. The DOST has advised that each houses should have at least four traps, two inside and two outside. They also pointed out that the OL trap system is just one way to prevent the spread of dengue but the primary measure still depends on how we keep our environment clean and to destroy all the breeding places of the Aedes mosquitoes. Scientists are still working to improve the OL trap system and find a better ovicide and larvicide solutions. You may contact Heritage Veterinary Corporation (HVC), authorized manufacturing and distributor of DOST Mosquito OL Trap at Tel. No. 641-0833 or email them at Reference and Sources:

2BIG POWER LED BULB; Fueless, Non-Turbine and Perpetual Current Generator

Screen shot of ABS-CBN's video in Youtube featuring 2BIG POWER being filled with water

Screen shot of ABS-CBN’s video in Youtube featuring 2BIG POWER being filled with water


Filipinos are well known to be creative where ever they might go most especially in the field of invention who are recognize not only in the country but in the whole world.

For every problem there is always a solution. One of the major problems that we are facing in the Philippines is the absence of electricity in scarce area. Many of Filipinos are suffering from darkness due to lack of light and electricity.


Dreaming to help the Filipino countrymen, Mr. Stevenson “Steve” Rejuso, a member of Filipino Inventors Society (FIS) and known for his inventions here and abroad, he invented the LED Lamp Portable DC Generator or 2BIG Power. This invention uses water as a fuel to light an LED Bulb.

Screen shot of ABS-CBN's video in Youtube featuring the inventor of 2BIG POWER

Screen shot of ABS-CBN’s video in Youtube featuring the inventor of 2BIG POWER

The story behind of this invention was just accidentally peed by a small child on their collection of scrap metals that was observed by his wife and gradually put all the plates until it lighten up the bulb. Some of his invention are known outside the country including Self-Generating Power System that has been brought to Thailand, while Singapore have been interested in Super Battery, the Power Protector Energy Saving have also been known in Jakarta, but of all his invention he finds the 2BIG Power has a lot of uses and benefits. As an application he uses it as a flashlight that only needs a sprinkle of water to light it up.

Features and Functions

2BIG Power are capable of producing 3-10 watts and lights up 3-4 days depending on the amount of water added. Aside from 2BIG Power he also invented the Tubig Powered Machine due to shortage of electricity in their area. It can light up a flashlight, a lamp post, it can also change batteries and battery pack of mobile phones and even a transistor radio that can light a village for 2 weeks. 2BIG Power and Tubig Powered Machine both generates electricity using water.

Screen shot of ABS-CBN's video in Youtube featuring the metal plates

Screen shot of ABS-CBN’s video in Youtube featuring the metal plates

Electricity produced through the metals that react inside the apparatus when water is poured over it. The wet metals produces energy that has the capability to produce energy. The many the water plates, the stronger enough to produce an economical value electricity.

One of the features of this device is it doesn’t required clean water to light a bulb. Sea water, Dirty water, fresh water, buko juice and waste water can be used as a fuel to light the 2BIG Power. It is also more useful than candles and oil lamps, aside from it cannot produced fire it is more economic and environment friendly.


The availability of the light during at night in Fairview, Quezon City is the main problem of the residents for 3 years, but now they are using the 2BIG Power that gives light to their street at night.. 2BIG Power machine has been very useful and easy to use as long as there is the presence of any form of water. The invention was cheap and user friendly. Now Tubig-powdered Machine is now functioning at Brgy. Greater Lagro, Quezon City, Metro Manila.       


His inventions was featured in Imbentor and Kabuhayang Swak na Swak in ABS-CBN. 2BIG Power will surely bring a great affect and change in areas where electricity is absent. He is looking forward to reach provinces, remote areas, and far flug places in the country where there is a lack of electricity. Many foreigners have been interested for the sale of his invention but his love for the country are strong enough to refuse and let the Filipino will first benefit it.

There are many recognition given to him by Filipinos and even outside the country. He admits that his invention has helped a lot to his family. In the middle of hardships he works hard to achieve his invention because aside from personal advantage still he focus on his mission in life which is to help the fellow Filipinos. As of now El Nido Palawan, Mindoro, Polilio Island, Cagayan De Oro, and Davao are some of the community who plans to install 2BIG Power. His only request for the sake of the people that the government will take care of his invention. This help him to strive and to invent more that will surely help the people in the community.





Photo and Video Credit:

Youtube: 2BIG POWER

Youtube: SWAK INVENTOR Tubig Power

The first Philippine plastic bottle Classrooms

One of the most common problems in our country right now, as we face the new basic education are the classrooms that will be used by the students. In Philippines one of the scenario flashing in the headlines in news are students cramped up in a small classroom and there are some situations that two classes are being held in one tiny room. In growing population of school children in Philippines needs a solution which greatly help students to be more comfortable in their classes. It is transforming another problem into a solution. To help in solving the problem about absence of classrooms in the country is to have another way on how to build it. Plastic bottles turns into a bottle classrooms are very creative way on how to reduce problem in classrooms and also to minimize amount of plastic bottles in our surroundings. A country which surrounded by a reusable plastic bottles, and education is a priority, there is a need to build classrooms from plastic bottles to be used by our future educators.


In Dalubhasaan, San Pablo, Laguna is a place in Philippines where you

can found a building made up of plastic bottles. “Plastic Bottle Mo, Kinabukasan Ko” is a project of the provincial government together with an actor/model and also an architect Illac Diaz and other sponsors who contributed to this project just to make it possible. Diaz and his My Shelter Foundation said about using plastic bottles will beneficial for economic reasons. “Rather to throw or burying it, we ought of making them as buildings” Diaz said. They build eight classrooms and a library with the support by the 3rd District Board Member Angelica Jones who also helped in the process of the project. Lacks of 7,000 classrooms as one of the challenge in part of the Department of Education just to cater the needs of the students. This project aims to inspire different local government units to have plastic bottle classrooms with their own places.

Features and Benefits

One person who also helped in building a plastic bottle classrooms was Celso Alcantara who said that the plastic bottle classroom is stronger compared to the structure he made in his 14 years as a mason. The making of a plastic bottle into classrooms are substitute to bricks and 1mostly the 1.5 liter would be filled with liquefied adobe and would be left to dry 12 hours before to use. Like in bricks the bottles are also stack using cement, wires and also steel bars to make it stronger. About 2 months and longer than the normal construction of concrete, and it is even stronger than bricks. Tested by the Mapua Institute of Technology. They are also using rice hulls and also planning to use tetra packs for roof. Using plastic bottles in making classrooms is cheaper than bricks. Hollow blocks would have the tendency to crack when earthquake and any disaster may come, but not plastic bottles. One plastic bottle classroom would use 5,000 plastic bottles. My Shelter Foundation who initiated this project which headed by Illac Diaz. The participation of the community in San Pablo, Laguna in constructing the plastic bottle classroom help them to have a sense of responsibility and ownership.

This is very beneficial to the students who are affected in having a small classroom in San Pablo Laguna. It is solving two problem in one project or 2hitting two birds in one stone because as a solution to lack of classroom it also the answer to the problem of wastes in our country. This project is very advantage to the local government unit of San Pablo Laguna and to the beneficiaries of My Shelter Foundation.Despite with this problem in our education system people behind this project taught us how to be creative in order to find a ways just to have a solution in this problem. The plastic bottle classroom is a very good example to our fellowmen to be more sensitive enough in what’s happening in the country right now. It’s very possible to see a houses made up of plastic bottles in our own community and different recycled materials to be used. The essence of this project is to give inspiration and creativity to the people and to give more comfortable and good education quality to the Philippines. The possibilities are endless as long as we think a creative solution to the challenges we face as one, and as part of a global community. May this innovation can contribute a lot to the development of the country for having its uniqueness and creativity to have the 1st plastic bottle classroom in the Philippines. May the students who are the beneficiaries of this project take their part to help the country in building new generation.


ABS-CBN news


Banana Peels: Use as a Replacement of Traditional Petroleum Based Plastic

By: Nikka Domini P. Pameroyan

Plastics which we are using today are not Eco-friendly and not safe. The government has been implementing laws which states to minimize the use of plastics so that we could restore the cleanliness of our environment as well as to stop the tearing of our ozone layer and to have a fresh atmosphere. Pollution is one of the causes why people get these different diseases. Plastics have a contribution to the Pollution, since the traditional plastics which are petroleum based are non-biodegradable. It is also one of the causes why floods happen because of the clogged drainage systems which are caused by plastics. Although plastics have a great contribution and help to mankind, it also can harm and affect the environment and the health of the people living in it.

Science has made its way to somehow minimize the causes of pollution and to have a Greener and Cleaner environment, introducing the Bio-Plastics which compose of the main ingredient used in the project: Banana Peels.

Banana_Peel_for_Healthy_SkinSince Bananas contains starch, it possesses the characteristic of being able to absorb humidity and it is also used by packaging drug capsules in the pharmaceutical sector. Some bio-plastics are made of other ingredients like vegetable fats, corn, peas and potatoes which also contains starches. Some bio-plastics are designed to be biodegradable.

This Bio-plastic project was made by an 18 year-old teenager, Elif Bilgin from Istanbul Turkey. Winner of the 2013 $50,000 Science in Action award, part of the third annual Google Science Fair.


What drives her in making this project is that “the bio-plastic is such a new concept and its range of use has been widening ever since it has been discovered (especially in the 21st century). The bio-plastic is a material which has the potential of causing a biological reform by means of reducing the amount of pollution caused by other plastic materials which contain petroleum derivatives. The banana peel is something we we throw away every day, but little do we know, it has much more efficient uses. For example, in Thailand, 200 tons of banana peels are thrown away daily and this number increases each year (Pangnakorn, 2006) and in the fruit industry, banana peels make up around 30-40g per 100g of the total revenue. All those peels may be put into much more use. The banana fruit’s peel was selected for this experiment because it is a waste material rich of starch.” (Elif Bilgin)

Since bananas are rich in starch, She explained that the starch and cellulose present in banana peels are a possible replacement for traditional petroleum based plastic. According to The Packaging Bulletin Magazine’s January issue, it is a proven fact that starch and cellulose are important raw materials used in the bioplastic industry (Packaging Bulletin, 2009).

The making: Similarly sized bananas with no bruises on the skin to ensure that the experimental process is fair. She dipped the bananas in a solution and different concentrations to produce banana paste. After dipping in a solution, it was boiled for 30 minutes. Drying the peels she then added again another mixture and placed it in the oven at 130°C. It was baked for half an hour. After 12 attempts and pilot experiments, 2 of these following experiments were selected and repeated for four times.

According to one of her experiments, 4N ( 4 newton) pulling force on the plastic from the opposite sides showed no change in strength and there was no decay in the plastic after 30 days, therefore the making of the bio-plastic is successfully made.

“This project is so easy that you can actually made it yourself right in your homes” says Elif. By using this innovation, we can make a cleaner and greener environment. The advantages of these are: the plastics are renewable, less energy to produce, easier to recycle, non toxic and it is biodegradable.

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Some companies and brands here in the Philippines are using bio-plastics materials in their products example is the Orocan. They are known for the durability of their products. I also found some articles and videos which teaches you how to make your own bio-plastics using different raw materials simply like water, starch, glycerin and vinegar.

Making these bio-plastics can really help minimize the pollution on our environment. Imagine the world replacing all petroleum based plastics to bio-plastics.



The Indestructible: New Innovation of Rescue Boats

In June 2008 the city and province of Iloilo was under a state of calamity after a destructive storm, Typhoon Frank (international name: Fengshen) had hit the country. According to Marcos Detourist, aside from Iloilo City, most of Iloilo Provinces of 42 towns were also heavily affected especially the towns crossed by major rivers. Detourist state that around 80+% of the Iloilo City went underwater and the worst hit district was Jaro, where the flood waters reported to have reach a high of 2 meters submerging almost the entire district.

Mariano Griño,now 68, a resident of Gran Plains Subdivision in Jaro experienced the destructive typhoon and was spared; his family had to lend their inflatable rubber boat to rescue trapped residents in neighboring subdivisions but the boat was damaged. He was 61 back then. (Cebu Daily News)

The Regional Community Defense Center where Griño was a reservist,  had an inflatable rubber boat years back but were damaged and became unusable after it was punctured. For years, Griño had the idea of building a rescue boat that was indestructible, a rescue boat that could resist collisions and not be broken or crashed easily.

He started constructing the boat in August 2008 at the backyard of his house. The boat’s body is filled with lightweight polystyrene (Styrofoam) insulated in marine epoxy composite. Its body frame is made of plywood and has skid plate made of aluminum serves as a protection from hard and pointed objects in steering over rooftops or fences. In my research the use of Styrofoam as a material in building boats will not sink in water and it is lightweight and can be transportable and it’s cheaper. Measuring 14 feet in length, six feet in width and three feet in height, the boat can accommodate 12 people. The boat includes a trailer for easy transport, equipped with a 40-horse power outboard engine, four paddles, a grappling hook or anchor to maintain stability while picking up victims, and a life jacket to throw easily to victims. The boat was completed a month and half later and was successfully tested at the Jalaur River in Iloilo last September 2008.


Mariano Griño (with hat) test drives his invention at Jalaur River, Iloilo. –

“We could save more lives and will respond better if we have the right equipment like unsinkable rescue boats, life jackets and lifebuoys,” Griño told the Philippine Daily Inquirer in a telephone interview last 2012.

Griño said he was planning to sell a unit with trailer and other accessories at P380,000 without engine and at P580,000 with a 40-hp outboard engine. He also said that the indestructible boat would still be cheaper than the inflatable rubber boats that cost P700,000 each.

Antique has the interest to buy several of these boats from Griño and the Iloilo City government is studying the project. He is also planning to build an indestructible rescue raft similar to the boat but cheaper and intended for poorer communities. (

According to Inquirer, Griño has not stopped working on innovations that could help save lives during disasters. He recently designed an indestructible life vest made of Styrofoam and ballistic nylon which costs around P350, cheaper than commercially sold life jackets. He’s latest innovation is a lifebuoy, a ring-shaped life preserver, made of Styrofoam and fiberglass cloth that can accommodate up to four adult persons.

With this new innovation of rescue boats, it can be a new kind of aid to Typhoon victims especially in the Philippines since the country had experienced one of the strongest typhoons in history (which was typhoon Yolanda, international name: Haiyan) back in 2013. Rescue boats are one of the equipment’s used during floods to evacuate victims out of  the affected area. With Griño’s new innovation of rescue boats made out of cheap alternative materials that can resist collision and cannot be punctured than the usual inflatable rubber boat, this can help the government because it can be use again and will last a long time and can save us money unlike the inflatable rubber boat that can be easily damaged and we need to supply more because it cannot be used again which is a total waste of money.

By: Harajean Mae D. Hachero


The S&T-Based Model Farm for Bamboo at Maasin, Iloilo: The Science Solution for a Sustainable and Vibrant Bamboo Production

One of the problems being faced by the nation today is the insufficiency of lumber. A good alternate for lumber is bamboo. Bamboo culm matures and develops strength properties comparable to most wood species in about three years. Its utility has expanded to include its transformation into various structural floors and panels and engineered bamboo products. Bamboo has spurred worldwide attention as a versatile plant with multifarious uses. Its uses ranged from subsistence to commercial food, to building and furniture. It offers vital economic and ecological benefits to many people in the world.

Bamboo, are some of the fastest-growing plants in the world. Bamboo is a kind of grass. Bamboo can be propagated by reproductive propagation or the use of the seeds, and the vegetative propagation, the use of rhizomes and cuttings. Among these methods vegetative propagation through the use of one-node cuttings is the most economical. These are easier to handle and more productive.

Bamboo belongs to the grass family, Gramineae or Poaceae. It is commonly known as woody grass because some of its structural growth characteristics resemble those of woody plants. A bamboo often has a tree-like habit. It is woodly and usually hallow clums, complex rhizome and branch systems, petiolate leaft blades and prominent sheating organs. Many bamboo species have big and upright stems, like Dendrocalamus asper which is known locally as Giant Bamboo. Some species are small and look like ordinary grass like Utod or Yushania niitakaymensis.


Some of the bamboo-made products from the Bamboo Farm at Brgy. Inabasan, Iloilo.

There are about 1,200 bamboo species that belong to at least 80 genera in world. Of these, about 200 species belong to approximately 20 genera found in Southeast Asia. Bamboos regenerates fast, hence, it can be harvested in 3 years. One mother pole can reproduce more than one shoot. It can hold soil erosion, stabilize riverbanks and improve the environment. It can endure in semi-arid and marginal areas. It grows readily on cogonal areas, survives summer drought and grass fire, and develops a forest-like canopy quickly. Likewise, it is the best alternate for wood because its strength properties are as good as with mahogany and other medium hardwood types. Bamboo has many uses. Many Filipino uses bamboo as material for house building, decorations, baskets, furniture, toothpicks, lampshades, fruit tray, flower vases, “kisame”, placemat and many more. Bamboo used for construction purposes must be harvested when the culms reach their greatest strength and when sugar levels in the sap are at their lowest, as high sugar content increases the ease and rate of pest infestation.

Bamboo is one major commodity of the Western Visayas Agriculture and Resources Research and Development Consortium (WESVARRDEC). Iloilo aims to become the bamboo center of the Philippines. It has an abundant supply of bamboo poles, mostly Kawayan tinik. As of 1999, the bamboo stands in both natural stands and plantations have an aggregate area of 8,085 ha. The province is producing 2,426,487 poles every year, supplying the raw material requirements of 41 manufacturers, 32 domestic producers, and 9 exporters of various processed bamboo products. Due to the increasing demand for bamboo poles, Iloilo is accelerating its plantation development efforts with a long-term plan of establishing additional bamboo plantations of about 58,200 ha.

With its abilities to be used for a variety of purposes, bamboo is now renowned as the material of the millennium particularly in the province of Iloilo. The most dominant species found in Iloilo is “kawayan tinik”. As such, the bamboo industry in the region is flourishing, employing 2,074 people and boasting a recognized export marketplace for its locally produced bamboo products.

While manufacturing quality high-end products and the products’ design advantage are considered the assets of the industry’s export market, availability of quality bamboo poles and under capitalization of existing firms remain the bamboo industry’s weaknesses. Small firms find it difficult to acquire funds for upgrading tools and equipments and would use any available bamboo poles thus, limiting their production capacity and capability.

To address these concerns, an S&T based model farm for bamboo was developed in Barangay Inabasan, Maasin, Iloilo led by Department of Environment and Natural Resources – Ecosystems Research and Development Service (DENR-ERDS) Region 6 to demonstrate the effectiveness of S&T in improving and maintaining the quality and productivity of existing bamboo clumps and the quality of bamboo woven products produced. This project started on March 2007. The S&T based farm was established in a 1-hectare farm of Mr. Norberto Ceballos, the Magsasaka Siyentista of Barangay Inabasan, Maasin Farmers’ Information and Technology Services (FITS) Center, Maasin, Iloilo.
One of the S&T interventions introduced was the production of good quality bamboo poles from existing bamboo clumps of Mr. Ceballos through the rehabilitation of 100 unmanaged clumps of bamboo in his farm. The rehabilitation technology involved cleaning, thinning, watering, and fertilizing existing clumps to facilitate growth and development of new shoots and the production of good quality poles.

Bamboo Farm at Brgy. Inabasan, Maasin

Bamboo Farm at Brgy. Inabasan, Maasin

As a result, the 100 rehabilitated clumps of bamboo had improved shoot production in terms of size and number by an average of 1 centimeters and 2 shoots or clumps respectively. This was observed a year after the rehabilitation and was expected to significantly improve every year.

As part of the science and technology intervention, construction of a small production of a processing area within the farm was also done. This area served as the small processing plant for the harvested bamboo poles. The manufacture of bamboo woven products with the use of introduced processing equipment and tools as well as proper treatment and preservation techniques had greatly improved in terms of craftmanship and volume. More quality bamboo woven mats or “amakan” were produced and this was shown in the partial budget analysis made in which the established science and technology based farm on bamboo had accued to the Magsasaka Siyentista guaranteed profit on a daily basis.

One of the highlights of this project was the conduct of field day to showcase the interventions done to improve the productivity and increase the income of the Magsasaka Siyentista compared with his existing farm practice. The field day is conducted every 2 months in the farm of Mr. Ceballos depending on the demand of its members. The event was attended by different groups and individuals including representatives for the Local Government Unit of Maasin, Western Visayas Agriculture and Resources Research and Development Consortium (WESVARRDEC) Techno Gabay Program Bamboo International, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, media, officials of the barangay and Maasin Mayor Mariano Malones Sr. The field day has three major parts: program ceremony, technology forum and the field tour and exhibit. Farm extensions were also realized and established in Barangays Buntalan, Daja, Abay, Bolo and Dagami still in the Municipality of Maasin. The 5 barangays with the help of a non-profit organization KAPAWA, started their operation a year ago with the farm in the Barangay Inabasan as its “Mother Farm” and its production and processing center. Each farm in every barangay has a group that maintains the farm.

The Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development visits the farm every year for the preservation and monitors the development of the project. The Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD) is one of the sectoral councils under the Department of Science and Technology (DOST). PCAARRD was established on June 22, 2011 through the consolidation of the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCARRD) and the Philippine Council for Aquatic and Marine Research and Development (PCAMRD). The Council formulates policies, plans and programs for science and technology-based research and development in the different sectors under its concern. It coordinates, evaluates, and monitors the national research and development (R&D) efforts in the agriculture, aquatic and natural resources (AANR) sectors. It also allocates government and external funds for R&D and generates resources to support its program. Mr. Ceballos also joins trade fairs for the exposure of the bamboo products made from his farm. The biggest client of Mr. Ceballos is Mang Inasal. His farm supplies the bamboo sticks in the whole franchise system of Mang Inasal in the whole Philippines. Mang Inasal purchases 5,000 bundles of bamboo sticks in every week. He has also clients from Manila that exports his products. Every Saturday, he delivers his finished bamboo sticks in the Iloilo Central Market and in Iloilo Terminal Market in City Proper, Iloilo City.

Five bamboo production technologies were packaged in the form of flyers and brochures for reproduction and distribution, which had the following titles: “Teknolohiya sa Pagporma sang Tiko nga Layon sang Kawayan”, “Produksyon sang Tambo”, “Ang Pagtubo sang Kawayan”, Ang Pagasikaso sang Puno sang Kawayan” and “Pagpreparar sang Sukdap nga Kawayan para sa Pagrara”.

While there have been significant positive results in this science and technology based farm project, a sustained strategy must be put in place for the multiplier effect to be realized among other bamboo farmers in Maasin. There is also a need to continuously monitor the growth performance of the rehabilitated clumps of “kawayan tinik”, including the implementation of silvicultural treatments as part of the maintenance activities as required of the technology.