Technological Problem – WikiCell

Posted: February 15, 2013 in Biomimicry

Technological Problem:

How to find a natural hard packaging that is biodegradable.

Function of Hard Packaging:

Hard packaging is used for storing consumable things in, such as food and drinks. These packages are often made out of plastic and polystyrene which are not environmentally friendly as they pollute our land and they aren’t biodegradable.



We found a design called WikiCell. This design mostly uses natural particles (with the exception of the synthetic biochemical polymer, chitosan, and the algae extract, alginate) to make a thin gelatinous casing that can hold liquid products. The WikiCell membrane is made from a combination of isomal (sweetener) or bagasse (a fibrous residue from sugarcane), alginate and chitosan. Shrimp skin (chitosan), is very similar to that of the WikiCell’s casing and provides a hard membrane sp that products may be packed to avoid breakage. Electrostatic forces hold the membrane together. These membranes have resistance to water diffusion. They also have adjacent shells which will allow the WikiCells’s to have stability over time. For different types of food and drinks, a wide variety of membranes can be produced. This will be done using a WikiCell Machine.

Most packaging is made from plastic, which is not biodegradable and just keeps breaking up into smaller and smaller pieces over a period of time. It also is made at the cost of valuable resources, example oil. WikiCells will allow food for food to be packaged in a fully biodegradable way and take away the oil-to-packaging process.




By Chris Stevenson

  1. davergp says:

    Hear about this tech at ecobuild last week. Pretty excited to see it in the shops. Ironically the only time I will buy something for the packaging XD

    • s012087 says:

      Hey, I haven’t yet, what’s it about? Oh and thanks for commenting on my blog. I went onto yours and I was blown away, it’s awesome! If you have any time could you maybe tell me if there are any improvement I can make to my blog because we are doing it for a school project.

  2. davergp says:

    Sorry, that was a typo. Was supposed to be “HearD about this tech (wikicell) at…” Ecobuild is an environmental building conference in the UK, you can find out more here:
    /selfpromotion ;p
    Thanks for the kind words, I have all the time really. I’m using the blog as a promotional tool to try and find work/display a portfolio type thing, but because I have no ‘work’ atm, I’d happily share (what little) I understand. I was actually really impressed with yours. Your biomimicry posts show a far better understanding of the science and discipline than many other adults who are ‘practicing’ biomimics. It’s actually quite shocking.
    What kind of angle are you taking this project from? Is it a ‘science’ project or a ‘media’ project, if you see the difference? Send me a PM either on LinkedIn (links at the top of my homepage) or the facebook page for the biomimicron here:
    //selfpromo XD

    • s012087 says:

      Don’t worry about that. Ok cool thanks. Pleasure, ya its a great blog, sure you will get work soon. Thanks, really? That’s cool! It’s more of a science blog. Ok I will. Thanks for your time

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