Aero Engineering Student hailed AMY IP 2020 Collegiate Winner

12:29:57 2020-11-23 | by Kimberly Gutierrez

       Mark Kennedy Bantugon came to ADMATEL’s laboratory last January to submit his thesis sample. Just as the academic year was about to end and while the rest of his batchmates were already anticipating their graduation, there he was completing the final test for his research. A pioneering study in the field of aviation and aircraft, Bantugon wanted to introduce a new source of ingredients for aircraft integral fuel tank sealant production: Pili Tree Resin.

       Now after ten months, 38 formulations, 20 differrent standard testing, 9 laboratory consultations, and 43 overall competitors―Mark Kennedy Bantugon of the Philippine State College of Aeronautics was declared the Alfredo M. Yao Intellectual Property Awards Collegiate Winner of 2020.

A Solo Proponent of a Pioneering Study

      Bantugon began his research on the applications of natural tree resin as early as high school and continued through college. Seeing the underlying problem of manufacturers and aviation companies to develop much better products to be used in aircraft parts and components, Bantugon was able to extend his study in exploring Pili tree resin as an alternative to the polysulfide-based sealant commonly used by the aircraft industry for sealing fuel tanks.

      His study is composed of two parts: (1) optimization process through Flammability Test and (2) the characterization process which presents the physical, chemical, mechanical, thermal, and rheological properties. It took him 38 formulations before he can proceed to the next part of his study, citing how the rigorous process has also impacted his final year in the university. “Yung pasok ko po ay from 7 [am] to 2 [pm] tapos pagtapos ng klase ko 5pm to 11 ng gabi po nasa school pa po ako nag fo-formulate  po ako everyday po yun… Pag weekends naman po 7 o'clock ng umaga hanggang 11 din po ng gabi… dun ko na dedicate yung sarili ko sa research.”

[I attend my classes from 7 [am] to 2 [pm] then after my class at 5 pm to 11 pm I stay up at school to formulate everyday… Even on weekends, I work from  7 o'clock in the morning until 11 at night. This is how I dedicate myself to my research]

      With his hard work, he was able to advance to the next part of the study: to subject the experimental sealant to different standard testing to prove its effectiveness. An important aspect to consider is the thermal property of the sample. Using ADMATEL’s Thermogravimetric - Differential Thermal Analysis (TG-DTA) and Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC), Bantugon was able to identify the thermal properties of his experimental sealant to prove its stability in the application procedure. DSC is an instrument that measures heat flow in and out of the sample relative to a reference as it is heated, cooled, or held under isothermal conditions. Differential Thermal Analysis, on the other hand, is a technique that measures the mass loss of the sample as a function of temperature or time. DSC reveals the melting point of the sealant, while DTA reveals the thermal stability and/or degradation temperature.

"Ang galing lang po kasi nung pagpunta ko po doon nung January, nabigyan po agad ako ng brief background kung para saan yung test na yun... Ang maganda rin po doon, nakapasok pa po ako sa loob po ng pinagte-testan po ng TG-DTA. Nakita ko po kung paano yung analyzation po nung test." [When I went to ADMATEL last January, I was immediately given a brief background on what that tests were for. The best part was that I even got a chance to go inside the laboratory. I saw actual analyzation procedure."

AMY IP Awards 2020 and Future Research Plans

      The Alfredo M. Yao (AMY) IP Awards which aims to recognize Filipino inventors, entrepreneurs,  and students like Bantugon to contribute to the development of new products and services that will ease the way of doing business in the country. This year, 43 overall applicants came to submit their work under the Professional and Collegiate category, of which only 15 finalists were chosen to present their studies in front of the panel of judges via Zoom meetings.

“Hindi talaga ako nag eexpect na ako yung mananalo kung baga speechless pa din ako kasi parang iniisip ko pa din kung paano to nangyare一kung paano ko natapos to ng ganito ka smooth, na ganito  ka successful. Just trust the process lang talaga. I really worked hard mabigyan po ng magandang ending and journey tong research ko.”

[I really wasn’t expecting to be the winner, I am still speechless thinking about how all of this happenedhow it ended this smooth, this successful. ]I] just trusted the process. I really worked hard to give a good ending and journey to my research.]

      The AMY IP Awards body through the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines and the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry are now working together to have Bantugon’s research patented and eventually test its application. When asked what is in store next for his study, Mark revealed that besides reviewing for the board exam, he is also preparing for another study related to aircraft parts and components.

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