Science has many different roles to play. Sometimes scientists seek to test a hypothesis. Other times scientists apply well-established theories to practical situations. Other times still, they use the methods of science to investigate a particular topic so that they may know more about it. Investigatory projects can be launched on just about any topic, including the uses of coconut husks.
Consider implementing an investigatory project into how well coconut husks act as fuel for a fire. Take a certain amount of coconut husk by weight, put it in a fire pit that is free of any other fuel source, light it and allow it to burn down. Record how long it takes for the fire to go out and record your result. To make the project more interesting, you might consider comparing the results to potential sources of fuel. These could include different types of wood, leaves, tree bark and lighter fluid.
The fiber material of coconut husks (called coir) is used to make ropes. Gather a large amount of this material and begin winding at least two long strands together in the way you would braid someone’s hair. Make sure it stays taut as you create your rope. When the rope is complete, tie one end to the branch of a tree and tie the other end to something moderately heavy, such as a brick. Continue to add weight until the rope breaks. Record how much weight the rope was able to hold.
Coir can also be used to make brushes for cleaning. Create a project that compares the cleaning power of coconut husks compared to regular household sponges. Create a spill that is very difficult to clean, such as egg or tomato sauce. Allow it to harden and record how long it takes to remove the stain first using the coconut husk and then using the regular sponge. Record your results.
Coconut husks are also used for compost. Create a compost heap made entirely out of coconut husk. Create another compost heat made entirely of another substance with which you want to compare the coconut husk (apple cores, for instance.) Check the piles periodically to see which heap decomposes faster. Record your results.
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