Tuesday, 21 February 2012 10:18
To address the increasing number of water hyacinth clogging the metro waterways and elsewhere, the Department of Science and Technology has just unveiled its locally-developed solution: a machine that scoops up the plants to put them in good use.
Developed by engineers from the Department of Science and Technology’s Metals Industry Research and Development Center (DOST-MIRDC), the machine, called the Water Hyacinth Harvester, can collect and hold up to 25 kilograms of water hyacinth per load. When full, the harvester discharges the collected plants to a dumping site or an assisting barge.
The harvester mechanically removes water hyacinths using a specially-developed conveyor system. “Mechanically removing the plant is the better alternative because chemical methods are hazardous to plants and animals,” according to the research team. The harvester was launched February 15 near the banks of the Laguna Lake in C6 Road, Taguig City.
The Harvester, one of DOST’s technology solutions, is a collaboration between DOST-MIRDC and the Project Management Engineering and Design Service Office, with funding of the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development.
According to DOST Secretary Mario Montejo, the Water Hyacinth Harvester prototype can still be modified and enhanced, depending on the need or the size and type of body of water where it will be used. “The DOST is very open to the adoption of the technology and also the improvement of the equipment,” he added.
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