winning student innovations from ‘Honor the King's Legacy’ Project
Nissan supports Thai communities with
Thammasat University’s Team 'Mitr' wins Nissan's national sustainable waste solution competition, with inventive oyster brick prototype designed for Chantaburi communities
BANGKOK, Thailand (April 20, 2020) – Irridescent bricks made from used oyster shells created by Thammasat University's Team 'Mitr’ and designed to generate additional revenue for the Baan Takadngao community in Chantaburi won the top prize in Nissan Thailand's 'Honor the King's Legacy’ 2019 Project.
The competition supports students to create sustainable waste management solutions to supplement community incomes – particularly important during COVID-19, where livelihoods have been affected.
"During this challenging period, uniting to help each other is so important. So the fact that students can create these sustainable innovations to use superfluous waste and also allow the communities to make money is heart-warming," said Ramesh Narasimhan, president at Nissan in Thailand. "Winning Team 'Mitr' integrated concepts of social innovation and sustainable development to help repurpose tons of discarded oyster shells into saleable products that can generate much-needed revenue for the community."
Team 'Mitr'’s winning brick combined ground oyster shell and concrete, and its 'glow-in-the-dark' functionality allows it to be used for garden decorations, construction, or potentially roads. What makes it more unique, is that it makes smart use of leftover oyster shells – and is significantly lighter than comparable products, absorbs less water and is more algae and moss resilient, and can be made in several shapes and sizes.
This winning waste-management solution can supplement the community income in Baan Takadngao, and Nissan in Thailand awarded Team 'Mitr' an educational scholarship of 250,000 baht plus an additional 50,000 baht for the university.
"We would like to thank Nissan for helping us to gain better understanding of social innovation through 'Honor the King's Legacy’ 2019 Project. We are so proud that as students, we can contribute to our communities and see the positive changes these creations can offer," said Kallayarat Boonyiamtanadee and Kanchana Kothong, members of winning side, 'Mitr.'
According to Assistant Village Headman of Baan Takadngao, Narongkorn Phibanchon, the oyster shells had been a considerable community problem for a long time. "We are thrilled that Nissan and the students had the vision to tackle our waste issue and not only solve it, but make a positive impact from it. We will continue working with the students to make this wonderful prototype a reality."
In second place was 'Klum-Jai' from Chiang Mai University, who created multipurpose sheets using discarded plastic in the Ban Nam Sai community in the Chantaburi community. These can be used for many applications, including as a cover to protect premium durian when shipped – solving a double problem as the fruit cannot use standard packaging yet must be protected. The cover then turns into a reusable shopping bag.
"This project expanded our vision to collaborate with communities and find the best solution to meet their needs while making a real product that is also commercial to generate income for the residents. This is the real ongoing value we can impart," said design students Soraya Radarit from team Klum-Jai' from Chiang Mai University.
The second runner-up was 'The Kaelb Craft' team from King Mongkut's Institute of Technology Ladkrabang, who created three household goods from recycled plastic, under the 'Sai Craft' brand. The products include bird clips that seal open bags and sharks and whales that can be used as phone chargers/headphone holders. Each set takes seven plastic bottles to make, and part of the proceeds will be used to plant new trees in the Ban Nam Sai community in Chantaburi.
"Congratulations to the six finalist teams and everyone who helped create sustainable waste management solutions for these communities and the environment that have made positive contributions to the future of Thailand," said Nitit Thanamool, Thung Bencha Subdistrict Administrative Organization Council member.
"Through Nissan's Honor the King's Legacy 2019 Project, we learned to help and support each other and shared information to improve the prototypes. We want to thank Nissan for bringing this project to Thung Bencha and neighboring communities as it helps us develop a blueprint for sustainable living," Nitit, added.
The finals of Nissan's Honor the King's Legacy 2019 competition were held in Chantaburi province on 13th March 2020. The six teams were joined for their product presentations, after five months of development, by more than 20 media, community leaders, Thai Government officials and Nissan in Thailand executives.
Dr. Porramate Chumyim, Senior Consultant and Program Manager, Food Innopolis, National Science & Technology Development Agency (NSTDA), thanked all the communities for providing a great laboratory for Nissan and the students over the past five months.
"I have witnessed the fantastic development of all six innovative prototypes that the communities can actually use and sell. I want to see all parties keep refining these projects to become sustainable models that can be applied for the benefit of Thai society."
The Honor the King’s Legacy Project was launched in 2017 to ensure continued awareness of the legacy of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, especially his sufficiency economy philosophy and teachings.This year, the program was designed to advance society and encourage student teams across Thailand to tackle local waste issues by developing sustainable social innovations to benefit local communities.
About Nissan Motor (Thailand) Co., Ltd.
Nissan was established in Japan since 1933 with the commitment to create Innovation that Excites for customer satisfaction. Nissan wants to improve quality of life for people in society by pursuing a goal of zero emission vehicles and zero fatalities on the road with "Nissan Intelligent Mobility". The company plans to introduce autonomous drive vehicles across regions for safety and more enjoyable driving experience. Nissan started business in Thailand since 1952. Currently, the Nissan Group of Companies in Thailand has subsidiaries five companies, including two of the production bases, over than 180 showrooms and service centers nationwide network. Vehicle range cover all segments includes 11 models spanning the entry level Eco-Car, SUV, Premium Sedans and Pickup Trucks.
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