Teen from Turkey turns bananas into plastic

There's nothing slippery about Elif Bilgin's idea of using banana peels as a substitute for old-school petroleum-based plastics.

The 16-year-old student from Istanbul spent two years perfecting a way to make a bioplastic out of discarded banana peels that could, in turn, be used for the electrical insulation of cables.

On Thursday, her efforts paid off when Scientific American named her the winner of its $50,000 Science in Action prize, a stepping stone to the Google Science Fair for young inventors in California this September.

In her research, Bilgin -- who says "science is my calling" -- determined that if starch and cellulose from such food waste as mango skins can be used to make bioplastics, then banana peels ought to do the trick, too.

"For me, this means that my project actually has a potential to be a solution to the increasing pollution problem caused by petroleum-based plastic," said Bilgin, who counts Nobel laureate Marie Curie among her heroes.

"It also means that I have started the process of changing the world, which makes me feel like a winner already," she added in an interview on the Scientific American's website, scientificamerican.com.

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Island Hopping in Honda Bay Gael Hilotin - Pinay Solo Backpacker
    Island Hopping in Honda Bay

    Puerto Princesa has long been a magnet of sun-worshippers and pleasure seekers. Gratefully, despite the crowd it brings, it has managed to preserve its splendor over the years. Resting on the eastern coast of the green city is Honday Bay, … Continue reading → …

  • Rising number of trafficked fishermen alarms Tawi-Tawi authorities VERA Files - The Inbox
    Rising number of trafficked fishermen alarms Tawi-Tawi authorities

    By Jake Soriano, VERA Files Bongao, Tawi-Tawi—Tawi-Tawi authorities are alarmed at the growing number of fishermen from the Visayas who end up here after being recruited by human trafficking syndicates to engage in dangerous compressor diving. The latest case involves … Continue reading → …

  • The return of Gigi Reyes Ellen Tordesillas, Contributor - The Inbox
    The return of Gigi Reyes

    By Ellen T.Tordesillas This is going to be fascinating. Atty. Gigi Reyes, former chief of staff of Sen. Juan Ponce-Enrile who is included among those accused of plunder in connection with the misuse of Priority Development Assistance Fund, came back … Continue reading → …

POLL
Loading...
Poll Choice Options