V4 BeyondPlastic – [MATERIALS] Potato Peels
Potato peels are a big waste stream. For example, potato chips and fries industries create tons of peel waste that is currently used as animal feed, fertilizer or biomass for gas production.
At the same time, peels are a great biomaterial as they contain enough starch to bind the fibers together and make a nice hard material after being cooked. To make the starch work, it needs to be heated up with some water. Gelatinization starts at around 50°C but can be sped up when cooked at around 75°C – 95°C.
In this file, you can find our material exploration notes of some interesting experiments we made to test out different processes and properties. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1BeSdjs7Rr7sLfxcqZmaGnwFAqAILCzKlqTh7iGL2Sg4/edit
And here is how some of them look like.
Making starter material:
To start making things from potato peels, we prepare them first. Normally we use dry powder as it’s easy to store and work with.
1. We put peeled skins in an oven to dry.
There might be better and more effective ways to dry your peels, but in a cold Dutch winter the oven seemed to be the only solution for us.
2. Dry peels are ground up in a blender/coffee grinder.
The size can be made different – from a very fine powder to bigger flakes.
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