A project from University Putra Malaysia (UPM) has developed a way to use the waste from pineapple harvest to to build frames for drones.
According to a report from Reuters, the researchers have been able to use the fibre found in pineapple leaves, which are usually thrown away, to produce the strong material.
Mohamed Thariq Hameed Sultan, who led the UPM project told Reuters the university had been researching sustainable ways to use pineapple waste.
“We are transforming the leaf of the pineapple into a fibre that can be used for aerospace application, basically inventing a drone,” Mohamed Thariq said.
Mohamed Thariq said the drones made using the material had a number of advantages including a higher strength-to-weight ratio than synthetic fibres, they were cheaper, lighter and biodegradable.
The first drones designed by the project can fly to a height of around 1,000m and stay up for approximately 20 minutes.
Mohamed Thariq said the end goal of the project is to develop a drone that can hold heavier loads such as sensors to give growers more tools to increase yields and become more efficient.