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‘Roads built with paper, invisible weigh bridges, wireless electricity’

STUDENTS in a leading technical college here believe they have come up with scientific innovations that can totally transform Tanzania’s construction industry, including building roads, highways and other transport infrastructure using waste paper.

‘Roads built with paper, invisible weigh bridges, wireless electricity _ Weighing News

This is the gist of experiences in the first Arusha Technical College (ATC) research, innovation and career guidance week, featuring a presentation by Emma Marandu. She came up with the an idea of “the suitability of penetration grade bitumen with kerosene and diesel to produce medium curing cutback bitumen.”

Another student, Regina Mlay tabled an innovative recycling of plastic waste into sustainable and environment friendly building materials, officials said, citing four students, namely Ang’ombwise Chavala, Gilbert Mwakivike, Mohammed Juma Othman and Musa Mwasembo as having designed a “concept and simulation of an automatic weighbridge system model for super highway roads in Tanzania.”

Admirers said that while it seems that future roads in Tanzania will be made of paper and plastic materials, with invisible weighbridges, young scientist Philips Athanas “decided that electricity posts on the road sides won’t be needed either.”

The student brought to the public his design of future power transmission wirelessly in what he described as ‘Flying Electricity!’ a notion that would somewhat take back electric car Moghul Elon Musk.

Dr Baraka Kichonge, the ATC academic and support services director, said the college administration “will assist the students to patent their innovations,” affirming that the young scholars are a living example on how students can translate what they learn in class into actual products and services.

The innovations on display will be officially documented, he stated, while Winifrida Mbowe, a lecturer and career development coordinator, said the college staff “is working to ensure that all students accomplish their dreams and reap benefits from their work.”

The new innovations for which patents are being pursued will see the paper roads, installed with invisible weigh-bridges and ‘flying’ electricity eliminating the use of roadside posts and dangling wires.

The clever students showcased those designs at the first ATC research, innovation and career guidance week at the campus, with Emmanuel Laurent coming up with the innovation of partial replacement of cement by using waste paper sludge ash (WPSA).

That can be used in soil stabilization during road construction projects, apparently removing cement from the road building equation, he said, citing wastepaper sludge ash as generated during the recycling of paper, an industrial by-product.

Some visiting observers said that WPSA has considerable potential in the construction industry in relation to the production of concrete, brick, mortar, soil stabilizing additive, rigid pavement and controlled low-strength materials (CLSM).

Baraka Magosha, another student, added to alternative construction with an assessment of the performance of concrete produced by partial replacement of sand with crusher dust, the visitors noted.

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