A final-year student of the Department of Chemistry at Federal University, Dutse, Jigawa, Nigeria, Zainab Bilyamin converted sachet water waste to hybrid fuel as her final-year project.
The project topic was “Conversion of Low-Density Polyethylene and Mixed Low-Density Polyethylene with Polyethylene Terephthalate into fuel”. Speaking with People’s Gazette, she mentioned that she got support from her parents and her supervisor, Aminu Dauda, and expressed her appreciation to them for their help in the course of carrying out the project.
Her supervisor, Aminu Dauda said that the normal process of thermal cracking was used in the research. The thermal cracking method involves subjecting waste to a high temperature of about 450-500 degrees celsius, which leads to the breakage of the molecular bonds and the breaking down long chained higher boiling hydrocarbons into shorter chained as well as lower boiling hydrocarbons in the absence of oxygen. The hybrid fuel can be used for electricity and can also be used in stoves.
When asked about the challenges she encountered while carrying out the project, she said “I carried out the experiment in the lab, although it was okay, during the experiment, an obnoxious odor which is not very pleasant to the nose was emitted. Had it been there was a facility a little bit away from the residential areas, it would have been so much better.” She also mentioned how she had to take her product to Bayero University, Kano in Kano state for analysis as there was no equipment for such in her school. “Had it been available in my school, then I would have carried out the physiochemical analysis myself in my school” she added.
She was excited as she felt she was the first in her department to have participated in such a task. She also added that it would be helpful to Nigerians to reduce waste, turn them into useful products and generate income from it.