Investigatory Project
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Cogon Grass Cardboard Food Packaging

The feasibility of cogon grass (Imperata cylindrica) as a substitute for cardboard food packaging was studied in this research project. The cogon grass was cut, boiled, and crushed in order to get the pulp. The pulp was then subjected to five different treatments before it was made into a card board like material. The amount of resin and other additives was kept constant while the amount of starch was varied in every treatment. Treatment A served as the control and contained 12% water and 7.5% starch.

 
Basella Rubra Biological Stain

This research project is aimed at producing a natural stain for plant and animal tissues that is inexpensive and whose sources are indigenous and abundant. Biological stains make possible the viewing of microscopic plant and animal tissues under microscopes. When stained, the specimens are viewed clearer and they become more defined. Berries of Basella rubra (alugbati) were crushed using mortar and pestle. The crude extract obtained was filtered and used as a substitute for crystal violet as primary stain and for safranin as counterstain in the Gram staining of Bacillus subtilis and Escherichia coli. The extract was also used for staining the apical meristem of Hydrilla verticillata and the leaf of Hibiscus rosasinensis (gumamela) using the squashes technique.

 
Wastepaper and Coir with Okra Mucilage

Presently, people everywhere are focusing on environmental concerns. As a result, there are movements toward recycling wastes and using natural substances. Recycled paper is one of the more popular forms, since it is possible to make by hand and utilizes a variety of materials. These have included okra mucilage and coconut fibers, things that are relatively cheap and abundant. However, such paper has not been qualitatively tested.

 
Spider Silk Textile Fiber

This research project is aimed at testing the possibility of using spiders as an alternative source of silk. The spiders used for this research are members of the species Nephila clavipes collected at the picnic grove inside the grounds of the Philippine Science High School. The silk was manually collected from the insect’s body without harming it. The silk was then twisted and entwined with the others to produce the thread. The thread was tested and compared with commercial silk based on its textile properties, like breaking point and elongation limit. A survey was conducted to compare its luster, texture, color, and general acceptability with that of commercial silk.

 
Mollusk Shell-Based Adhesive as Mortar

The study aims to determine the feasibility of using mollusk shellbased adhesive as a substitute for mortar.

The mollusk shell-based adhesive was made from combining powdered mollusk shells and tackifier in an elastomer and toluene mixture. Different adhesives were made using variated concentrations of the two tackifiers (sodium silicate and polyvinyl acetate) and two elastomers (neoprene WHV and neoprene AG). Randomly chosen samples from each combination were tested for shear strength at the Standards and Testing Division of the Department of Science and Technology (STD, ITDI, DOST Bicutan).

 
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