Open Journal of Applied Sciences

Volume 6, Issue 5 (May 2016)

ISSN Print: 2165-3917   ISSN Online: 2165-3925

Google-based Impact Factor: 0.85  Citations  h5-index & Ranking

Life Cycle Assessment of Hydrogel Used in Hydroponics for the Impatiens New Guinea Production

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DOI: 10.4236/ojapps.2016.65030    2,554 Downloads   3,368 Views  


The environmental impact on the planet leads to the search of new processes that are friendly with the environment and obtaining high quality products. In this sense, green chemistry is used in the generation of products through processes that do not affect the planet. In many of these processes and in general, the use of water has been depleted this resource of vital importance for the survival of living things. In Mexico, 77% of water is used in agriculture; 14% in the public supply; 5% in the thermoelectric plants and 4% in the industry. In research presented, hydroponics is essential in the process and is defined as a technique used to reduce excessive water consumption, by providing the necessary nutrients, in addition to preventing soil erosion by allowing the growth of plants without use of ground. The potassium polyacrylate is a super-absorbent polymer (Hydrogel) capable of absorbing water up to 500 times of its weight and has a life span of 10 years. When mixed with a substrate, the required nutrient solution potassium polyacrylate allows to lengthen the interval watering and thus reducing the consumption of water from plants. Morelos is the largest producer of ornamental plants in the country, due to its privileged climate and location. In the present work using the hydroponic methodology, we planted cuttings of Bethlehem New Guinea (Impatiens New Guinea) in a substrate made by 60% of coconut fiber, 20% tepojal, 20% ground sheet mixed with polymer of potassium (20 g per litre), 400 ml of Steiner nutrient solution in concentrations of 40%, 60%, 80% and 100%, varying the interval of 3-, 6-, 8- and 10-day watering. The variables considered are: concentration of chlorophyll, the plant height, leaf area, number of stems and weight dry total. The 12 principles of green chemistry applied to hydroponics using polyacrylate of potassium as part of the substrate in Bethlehem New Guinea (Impatiens New Guinea) to determine the analysis of life cycle (LCA), doing the balance of inputs and outputs of the system, and the stages of the LCA. Finally the SimaPro software was used to measure the environmental impact of the use of the polymer in hydroponics by varying the watering interval and the concentration of the Steiner solution, entering data for the concentration of Steiner, and the volume of water used. With the results obtained by measurement of weight dry total and concentration of Steiner solution and using the Software SimaPro, Steiner saw that the solution with the concentration of 60% using potassium polyacrylate as part of the hydroponic substrate in Bethlehem New Guinea and in the range of 10 days to water generated less environmental impact. On the other hand, in the same figure, it is determined that the Steiner solutions with concentrations of 80 and 100% generate a bigger environmental impact, due to the saturation of the solutions.

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Segura, S. , Patiño, M. , Cortes, M. , Patiño, J. , Vaca, L. , Ruiz, N. , Alemán, R. and Torres, O. (2016) Life Cycle Assessment of Hydrogel Used in Hydroponics for the Impatiens New Guinea Production. Open Journal of Applied Sciences, 6, 310-314. doi: 10.4236/ojapps.2016.65030.

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