Muscat – Two students from the University of Technology and Applied Sciences (UTAS) Muscat have recycled plastic bottles to produce fabric. Their project was declared winner at the recently concluded Upgrade Programme.
The project, developed by Zainab Mohammed al Hajri and Jihan Hamed al Busaidi, arose from a real life situation where the team encountered the problem in their day-to-day life.
“A large section of the society in Oman and also in many other countries suffer from the continuous accumulation of discarded plastic bottles,” Zainab told Muscat Daily.
“We came up with this idea after pondering over the best way to recycle waste plastic bottles, which impact our environment to a great extent.”
The duo is now contemplating a startup after winning at the Upgrade Programme, conducted under the Ministry of Higher Education and Research and Innovation, that encourages to transform the best graduation projects into successful ICT and industry domain startups.
“The research started as a graduation project at UTAS under the supervision of Dr Wafa al Rawahi and Dr Amal al Rahbi,” Zainab informed.
“The project, called ‘Sustainable Fabric Production from Recycled Plastic Water Bottles’, aims to recycle waste plastic water bottles into a sustainable, environmentally friendly and high-quality fabric that can be used in different industries,” she explained.
Talking about the challenges while going about their new venture, Zainab said, “We are still working on it in order to transform this graduation project into a startup. There are some expected challenges such as getting the necessary equipment as it is not available in the sultanate. Moreover, consumer acceptance of the final product is another challenge for us, since the idea of the product is new to Oman.”
The main supporters of the project are the Research Council and their families, Zainab said.