“Is it a bird? Is it a plane?”, if you have a solid guess in your mind, you’d better hold your horses as it it’s drones instead of a red-caped flying man.
Somewhat a cultural phenomenon for gadget enthusiast, the creation drones undoubtedly enhance our lives as helping us reach places we couldn’t and also to see things we can’t. What is often made out of carbon fiber or plastic materials may have taken a turn for the better of Mother Earth, as researchers from Putra University has figured out a way to make drones from pineapple leaves.
Before we move to the specifications, it’s important to mention that the drone frames ar the ones made out of pineapple leaves. In an interview with Reuters, Professor Mohamed Thariq Hameed Sultan who had successfully found a way to turn fiber from pineapple leaves into material sturdy enough to make drone frames, said that drones built with the material had a higher strength-to-weight ratio than frames made with synthetic fibers. They’re cheaper and lighter, too, making it easier for them to fly greater distances and greater speed.
So how does a drone made out of pineapple leaves help nature? Drone flyers may be familiar with the dreaded feeling when your drone flies beyond your sight and connection, only to crash land somewhere untraceable. If remained uncovered for a long amount of time, one may give up the search to get a new drone instead while their lost plastic drone sits somewhere in the dirt, for almost eternity.
These new biodegradable drones help fix that problem, as the researchers say that A damaged frame can be buried and the bio-composite material will degrade within two weeks.
Prototypes made from the material have also flown to around 1,000 meters and can stay aloft for about 20 minutes, much like any other drone.
Started in 2017, the project helps finding sustainable uses for pineapple waste. Farmers are known to burn or discard these leaves after harvest, which can cause air pollution. Selling the waste to these research would help increase their income and may benefit the environment instead.