An increasing number of people use tablet computers these days, adding to the high demand on energy caused by our digital tools. But one company has come up with a solar powered solution to reduce energy consumption from the grid and tap it from the sun instead.
In the 1960s movie classic, “The Graduate,” Dustin Hoffman, playing a recent college grad, is cornered by a middle-aged man who tells him the word for the future: plastics.
Scientists at Imperial College London report that they have invented a polymer, made from non-food sources, that could be used in packaging and then tossed into compost piles or landfills, where it degrades upon contact with water.
The scientists said they worked three and a half years on a biodegradable polymer that is made from sugars known as lignocellulosic biomass, derived from fast-growing trees, grasses, and agricultural and food wastes.
Lead researcher Charlotte Williams said the team accomplished its goal of producing the polymer from non-food sources and using small amounts of water in the process — an advantage over another biorenewable plastic, polylactide, whose manufacture requires large amounts of water and energy.