Sounds crazy I know but scientists and plastic experts are looking at ways of building car parts and have found that mushroom roots may be the answer. They are looking at ways to reduce the use of petroleum plastics and people are not always enthusiastic to change to other materials. Car parts at the minute can be made up of as much as 10% petroleum plastics but can now be made from bioplastic. One car that already uses this is the new Ford Fiesta and not only uses it for areas such as the seats, using soy beans, but also for harder products in the car such as the dashboard.

 

The Fiesta has been tested and there is no difference using these materials and the quality is not impaired at all. It is expected that the new material will in time be better than the materials that are used more commonly and now a soy based foam is being formulated to be similar to that of the tempur mattresses making them much more comfortable. This is also much more environmentally friendly and although soy is not biodegradable it more efficient to make and is greener. The market is accepting green plastics and continues to grow, scientists at Ford are making moulds of car parts with a mixture of plant materials such as mushroom roots and wheat straw. The plant matter feeds the mushroom roots making them grow and around a week later when the mould is full, the contents, in a car part shape, are covered in bioplastic.

 

Although the mushroom car parts are not in use yet, it is hoped that they will change the way car parts will be styled as well as the way they are manufactured. So if mushroom roots may be the future of car parts then chicken feathers could be the way forward for fuel. Scientist Richard Wool has tested feathers and found that high hydrogen storage devices can be produced from cooking them. Although there are problems with this, feathers do have some advantages and as 6 billion pounds of chicken feathers are not used for anything, they could be put to our advantage in our cars.

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