Introduction: Making BioPlastics, Environmentally Friendly Plastics
This is my first instructable so please try not to criticize to harshly.
BioPlastics are plastics that can be made out of common household products.
These are to the environment in that they contain no petroleum unlike usual plastics such as tupperware etc. Also instead of taking about 100 years to fully decompose it only takes about 7.
There are probably other instructables about BioPlastics out there, but I made some for a school project so I decided to make an Instructable
Step 1: Ingredients
Here are the ingredients that I used...
-Wax Paper (optional)
You will also need a microwave.
And measuring tools
Step 2: Mixture
The Ratio I mixed with was 1 part corn starch and 1 part water. Feel free to change this based on the use of your plastic.
For a more rigid plastic, add more corn starch.
For a more flexible/ squishy plastic add more water.
I mixed them in a sandwich bag.
If you want to add in some vegetable or canola oil (I used canola) and it will help keep it together a little bit
for every 2 cups of MIXED water and corn starch I added 1 tablespoon of oil. But of course you can change this based on your intended use of the plastic.
Make sure to get all the bumps of corn starch out you want it to be completely dissolved
It should look a bit like milk.
Step 3: Microwave the Mixture.
For a mixture totaling 2 cups (1 cup water and 1 cup corn starch) I nuked it for about a minute.
This of course could change based on the wattage of your microwave. I believe that mine is some wheres around 1000 to 1400 watts (ya i know thats pretty broad).
If your not sure how long to keep it in for just watch it until it turns to a solid yellow color.
The longer it is in the less flexible it will be but be careful not to leave it in to long or it will become very brittle and crumbly.
WARNING: BE VERY CAREFUL WHEN REMOVING THE MIXTURE FROM THE MICROWAVE AS IT WILL BE VERY HOT AND MAY REQUIRE 5 MINUTES TO COOL DOWN !!!
Step 4: Molding It
Congrats you have just made BioPlastic. But wouldn't it be cool if you could make shapes out of it or even containers ?!?!?
What I did was I put a cookie cutter on some wax paper then poured in the BioPlastic mixture before I cooked it. When i realized that it was leaking a little I just put some tape around it and it was fine.
If you really wanted to get creative you could make a mold out of a microwaveable safe material (fired clay) and you could make some pretty neat containers.
Step 5: Yay You're Done
Well done you now know how to contribute to the environment by making plastics that do not harm the earth. Happy Earth week! and don't forget to vote!
This particular batch turned out to be more of a rigid gel type material.
If I had added just little more corn starch and kept in the microwave longer then it would have been more like a hard plastic.
Also once it dries completely you can run it under water without it falling apart, but I would not put it in the dishwasher.
Participated in the
Earthjustice United States of Efficiency Contest