ITS Campus, ITS News – Referring to the Tri Dharma of College, ITS step by step continues to be embodied in devoting itself to the community. Among them is done by the Department of Chemical Engineering, which provides actors micro, small and medium enterprises (SMES) to cultivate waste of coconut water into organic fertilizer.
The team consisting of Dr Eng R Darmawan ST MT, Dr Ir Sri Rachmania Juliastuti MEng, Ir Nuniek Hendrianie MT, Setiyo Gunawan ST PhD, and Hakun Wira A ST MMT PhD is convinced that science is not unaffordable, so it does not have to be difficult to be felt by the community through knowledge transfer activities. On that basis, ITS creates activities of community services that have lasted since 2017.
Chairman of the Community Service team (Abmas) Dr Eng R Darmawan ST MT said, in 2017 Abmas activities began with special training held for the business people who produce waste producers in Ponorogo. “Furthermore, wasted coconut water will be processed into organic fertilizer that serves to repair land that has been degraded soil nutrients,” he explained.
For this reason, based on the data of the Central Statistics Agency (BPS), the quantity of coconut production in Ponorogo amounted to 6,170.09 tonnes. As the center of the MSME industry that mainly uses coconut as a production base, the waste of old coconut water is easy to find in the area. “The waste of old coconut water is not utilized optimally, but still contains enough nutrients that are beneficial,” he said.
In 2018, the activities that collaborating with the Development Planning of Research and Development (Bappedalitbang) Ponorogo provides an opportunity for business actors to visit the Department of Chemical Engineering, to find out how waste treatment tools work in research laboratories. “The next year, participants were expanded to the agricultural extension of Ponorogo,” added lecturer who is responsible for industrial processing laboratory.
During this Covid-19 pandemic, communal training that is an annual agenda can not be implemented. However, Darmawan and the team attempted to keep this activity to directly conduct the business actors. “This year is done by mentoring and giving starter and bioreactors to continue the experiments at home,” said Kumamoto University Japan alumnus.
Furthermore, Darmawan explained that the starter is a microbial community that is extracted from the Lapindo mud with additional several times the treatment as a supplement ingredient composition. “In our study in 2018 years ago, it was proven that a mixture of wastewater molasses and the microbial community could be a good combination of plant fertilization,” he said.
Not stopping until the liquid organic fertilizer is produced, Darmawan and the team always conduct experiments from year to year to improve the content of sodium, Phosphate, and potassium (NPK) in fertilizer. “Our trials do by varying the type of test plants and methods in one of the boarding schools in Jombang,” said the man from Kertosari, Ponorogo.
Therefore, the Abmas ITS team has also assisted the hydroponic pyramid and the sustainability of the greenhouse in the boarding school. Darmawan reported that this is currently being conducted open recruitment of ITS students who want to implement a real work lecture (KKN) with related topics. “They will be invited to apply this liquid organic fertilizer hydroponically in the boarding school,” he explained.
This community service has received positive responses from the trainees. One of them is Ery Wibowo, an industrial business person who is excited about this activity. “We hope that the Ponorogo community can be highly competitive by continuing to make use of local potential owned,” Darmawan added.
For the cooperation that has been established since 2017, the lecturer titled Groundwater Environmental Leader (GeIK) has given his appreciation to the Bappedalitbang district of Ponorogo. “Hopefully in the future, Bappedalitbang and local governments of Ponorogo can continue this competence more broadly,” he said hopefully.
(tri/Anjani/ITS Public Relation Officer)
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