Palestinian students develop innovative recycling machine

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Palestine – Beverage bottles are becoming a growing segment of the municipal solid waste stream in Palestine and the world. Plastic, glass and paper bottles and containers offer convenience, but they also create unnecessary waste in landfills.

Recycling bottles, however, can positively impact the environment, and reduce waste as well as use of energy and resources.

A team of young engineers from Birzeit University have developed a machine that separates and reduces the volume of beverage containers, reducing the effects of waste on the environment and decreasing the amounts of solid waste caused by lack of awareness.

Two mechanical engineering students, Antranik Emerezian and Nicola Shaer, and information technology student Mu’tasem Hidmi developed “Canbot” under the supervision of professor Simon Araj and the Mechanical Engineering Department.

This machine allows the user to easily reduce the volume of aluminium cans as well as plastic, glass and paper bottles and containers instead of adding them to other waste. Canbot not only grabs these beverage containers from the user, but also uses a smart control system linked to an efficient pneumatic system to separate different types of materials and reduce their volume by crushing them.

The students expressed their excitement about the environment-friendly project. “We aim to kick-start the market of sustainable waste management,” Emerezian assured. “We seek to encourage Palestinian businesses and the community to develop waste minimisation projects that are socially and environmentally responsible.”

“Our project does not stop here,” Emerezian added. “The next step will target institutes that are interested in saving the environment. They can help us improve the machine and distribute it all over the country.”