Title

The Effects Of Temperature On The Biodegradation Of Polystyrene Foam By Wood Rotting Fungi

Author(s)

Jasdeep Singh

School Name

Spring Valley High School

Grade Level

10th Grade

Presentation Topic

Environmental Science

Presentation Type

Non-Mentored

Abstract

Plastic’s properties tend to result in the polymer being resilient towards environmental degradation factors. This results in the accumulation of plastics in the habitats of biological communities, which leads to pollution. The purpose of this study was to discover the efficiency of alternative methods in catalyzing the biodegradation of polystyrene. One of these alternative methods includes increasing the temperature in order to improve the efficiency of the biodegradation of polystyrene. It was hypothesized that increasing the temperature of polystyrene to 30 degrees C would cause the biodegradation of polystyrene by wood-rotting fungi, measured by change of mass, to increase beyond the polystyrene biodegradation at room temperature (23 degrees C). In the experiment, pieces of polystyrene foam were placed into a beaker with samples of wood rotting fungi for 50 days. Each set of 6 beakers incubated at a different temperature. These temperatures ranged from 23oC, 30oC, and 15oC. The pieces were measured prior to experimentation and after in order to determine the amount of mass lost. Results showed an increase of mass instead of a decrease. This was tested for significance using a One-Way ANOVA with ɑ=.05, and the treatments had significant variance( F(2,87)=31.14, p<.001. A Post Hoc Tukey Test showed that the differences between 23oC-30oC and 23oC-15oC were significant. This leads to the conclusion that wood rotting fungi were colonizing on and preparing to degrade the pieces of polystyrene foam. /

Location

Owens 210

Start Date

4-16-2016 11:45 AM

COinS
 
Apr 16th, 11:45 AM

The Effects Of Temperature On The Biodegradation Of Polystyrene Foam By Wood Rotting Fungi

Owens 210

Plastic’s properties tend to result in the polymer being resilient towards environmental degradation factors. This results in the accumulation of plastics in the habitats of biological communities, which leads to pollution. The purpose of this study was to discover the efficiency of alternative methods in catalyzing the biodegradation of polystyrene. One of these alternative methods includes increasing the temperature in order to improve the efficiency of the biodegradation of polystyrene. It was hypothesized that increasing the temperature of polystyrene to 30 degrees C would cause the biodegradation of polystyrene by wood-rotting fungi, measured by change of mass, to increase beyond the polystyrene biodegradation at room temperature (23 degrees C). In the experiment, pieces of polystyrene foam were placed into a beaker with samples of wood rotting fungi for 50 days. Each set of 6 beakers incubated at a different temperature. These temperatures ranged from 23oC, 30oC, and 15oC. The pieces were measured prior to experimentation and after in order to determine the amount of mass lost. Results showed an increase of mass instead of a decrease. This was tested for significance using a One-Way ANOVA with ɑ=.05, and the treatments had significant variance( F(2,87)=31.14, p<.001. A Post Hoc Tukey Test showed that the differences between 23oC-30oC and 23oC-15oC were significant. This leads to the conclusion that wood rotting fungi were colonizing on and preparing to degrade the pieces of polystyrene foam. /