The Right Stuff: biodegradable alternatives to plastic mulch Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/undergraduate_thesis_or_projects/r494vm643

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  • Developing a biodegradable alternative to plastic mulch film
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Abstract or Summary
  • This project was a continuation of work started by Mark Ingman after he was bothered by the amount of plastic sheeting used in agriculture in China. He was determined to develop an alternative to this environmentally destructive use of plastic by farmers. The plastic “mulch” is used to prevent weeds and maintain soil moisture, but after a season of use the plastic is either thrown into a landfill or burned. Needless to say this creates a lot of unnecessary waste. Mark came back to the United States and put together a team to develop an alternative to the plastic mulch using wool and flax shive waste. The shive waste is an agricultural byproduct. It is composed of biomass available after processing the plant for fibers, oil and seeds. The project was sponsored by the EPA and given a P3 Phase 2 Grant after all initial work. Dr. Skip Rochefort was asked to consult to help develop the product further. He suggested using sodium alginate, a common food additive, to bind the flax shive into a sheet form. Sodium alginate is biodegradable and fit within the sustainability needs of the project. I was tasked with taking Dr. Rochefort's idea and turning it into the final mulch sheet product. The goal of the project was to make this sheet retain moisture and prevent weeds like other mulches but biodegrade over time. At the end of the season, this product would be tilled into the soil as a soil amendment.
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  • description.provenance : Submitted by Stephanie Walker (walkers@onid.orst.edu) on 2014-05-23T05:33:26Z No. of bitstreams: 2 2014 Expo Poster_04_18_2014pm_MSedits.pptx: 4213727 bytes, checksum: 26f12f8025d09765035d1c662a085c25 (MD5) 2014 Expo Poster_04_18_2014pm_MSedits.pdf: 3013078 bytes, checksum: d646bba52db5b48e7a323c4a7d6912e9 (MD5)
  • description.provenance : Made available in DSpace on 2014-05-23T14:39:55Z (GMT). No. of bitstreams: 2 2014 Expo Poster_04_18_2014pm_MSedits.pptx: 4213727 bytes, checksum: 26f12f8025d09765035d1c662a085c25 (MD5) 2014 Expo Poster_04_18_2014pm_MSedits.pdf: 3013078 bytes, checksum: d646bba52db5b48e7a323c4a7d6912e9 (MD5)
  • description.provenance : Approved for entry into archive by Patricia Black(patricia.black@oregonstate.edu) on 2014-05-23T14:39:55Z (GMT) No. of bitstreams: 2 2014 Expo Poster_04_18_2014pm_MSedits.pptx: 4213727 bytes, checksum: 26f12f8025d09765035d1c662a085c25 (MD5) 2014 Expo Poster_04_18_2014pm_MSedits.pdf: 3013078 bytes, checksum: d646bba52db5b48e7a323c4a7d6912e9 (MD5)

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