Normally it’s chefs who find inspiration in food. But a number of clever engineers and inventors are doing the same these days, developing new materials, biofuels, ways to harvest energy, and other inventions by using common foods and food waste to create the foundation or impetus for their designs.
Two of the most popular areas of food-based inventions are in biofuels and materials science, with a number of waste products from food being reused as the basis for eco-friendly fuel, bioplastics, and new and stronger materials. Food also is making its way into energy sources and even 3D printing.
Click on the image below to see the creative ways these foods are being used by engineers for new inventions.
A US company called Renmatix has invented a process called plantrose that can turn lignocellulosic biomass -- such as waste from sugar cane -- into industrial sugars. These sugars are a key element of bio-based chemicals and fuels, including polypropylene and polyethylene. Renmatix’s process is water-based, making it easy, fast, and scalable. So impressed with it was plastic and chemical giant BASF that the German company invested in $30 million in Renmatix to help it broaden its options for the use of biomaterials. (Source: Renmatix)
"In that case what I think is government should help or support the farmers to produce more tomatoes in order to avoid scarcity. No doubt scarcity will be a problem but then it is the responsibility of the government to look into the matter and take steps which will result in more production because in the end it will be beneficial to the country only ."
Debera, yes government can help the farmers t increase the production. But again there may be some other governance issues like finding place for additional cultivation, fertilizer, water etc and moreover they cannot give incentives to any particular crop also.
In that case what I think is government should help or support the farmers to produce more tomatoes in order t oavoid scarcity . No dounbt scarcity will be a problem but then it is the responsibility of the government to look into the matter and take steps which will result in more production because in the end it will be beneficial to the country only .
"they should keep a strong check and balance not only on the quality of things produced but also like you said to keep the prices reasonable for the reusable items and products than only these inventions can be usefull for the country and the enviornment"
Debara, agreed. It's not a question of who owned the technology; irrespective of ownership the raw material tomato is the issue. Tomato is cultivating by farmers and it's available in public market, so when they collecting in huge quantity for fuel purpose, it can create similar demand in food market also, due to scarcity.
Indeed, Pubudu, I like the idea not only of turning food waste into something else that can be used and is productive, but also being able to use food to create something new that is edible. 3D printed sugar sculptures that one of our reporters wrote about is a fine example of this.
Agreed My Design that there can be socio economic factors but then I will say that it is the responsibility of government to own these new inventions as in they should keep a strong check and balance not only on the quality of things produced but also like you said to keep the prices reasonable for the reusable items and products than only these inventions can be usefull for the country and the enviornment .
Thanks, Debera. Yes, food waste is becoming a key material for recycling and reusing, and it's about time. I, too, think it's interesting all the inventive ways engineers are finding to use it for other things.
"I have a lot of friends that do that with food here where I live, and also do a lot of composting. It's a really good way to reuse food. I just bought a house and haven't started a garden yet but do eventually want to start reusing food this way eventually."
Elizabeth, then start it as soon as possible and be self reliable through natural methods. Natural means vegetation without chemical fertilizers.
The engineers and inventors of the post WWII period turned their attention to advancements in electronics, communication, and entertainment. Breakthrough inventions range from LEGOs and computer gaming to the integrated circuit and Ethernet -- a range of advancements that have little in common except they changed our lives.
Neil Fromer is the executive director of the Resnick Institute, a program for energy and sustainability at the California Institute of Technology, working to develop new ideas and research technologies related to providing a sustainable future. He spoke to us about the severity of the current drought in California and how solar energy can help prevent such situations in the future.
From home enthusiasts to workers on the manufacturing floor, everyone's imagination is captured by the potential of 3D printing. Prototyping, spare parts creation, art delivery, human organ creation, and even mass product production are all being targeted as current and potential uses for the technology.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.