PNRI Researchers Win Big at the 2019 DOST Intellectual Property Awards
The Department of Science and Technology - Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (DOST-PNRI) once again took the lead for publications in internationally-recognized journals during this year's DOST Intellectual Property Awards (IPA) on December 10, 2019 at the Eastwood Richmonde Hotel in Quezon City.
This year, 12 scientists and researchers from PNRI won the International Publication Award for authoring and co-authoring 21 publications - the highest number among DOST agencies.
The awards were given by the National Academy of Science and Technology (NAST), the Philippines’ leading advisory and scientific recognition body, for research outputs published in internationally-recognized publications such as Thomson Reuters (formerly ISI) or Scopus-indexed journals in the last three years before the year of the nomination.
PNRI scientists and researchers have continuously garnered the awards since the first DOST IPA in 2013. This is the fourth year that PNRI has won the most number of publications among DOST agencies, having earned the same distinction in 2014, 2016 and 2018.
DOST Secretary Fortunato De La Peña (2nd from left) and Civil Service Commission (CSC) Chairperson Alicia Dela Rosa-Bala (middle) with PNRI Technology Diffusion Division Chief Ms. Ana Elena Conjares (extreme left) during the awarding of the new scientist ranks to PNRI's very own Dr. Lucille Abad (Scientist III) and Mr. Sotero Resilva (Scientist I) (4th and 5th from left, respectively). The oathtaking was held on December 16, 2019 at the Philippine International Convention Center, Pasay City, and was hosted by the Scientific Career System (SCS) and National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines (NAST PHL). Photo from Dr. Lucille Abad
CSC Grants Scientist Ranks to PNRI Specialists
The Department of Science and Technology - Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (DOST-PNRI) congratulates its very own Sotero S. Resilva of the Agriculture Research Section, who was among the researchers who were recently conferred the Scientist rank by the Civil Service Commission.
Mr. Resilva conducted significant research in the field of entomology, and was instrumental in the Institute's development and application of the Sterile Insect Technique, which uses radiation to control the population of various pests that cause diseases and damage to agricultural crops.
PNRI also congratulates Dr. Lucille Abad, Chief of the PNRI Atomic Research Divison, who was awarded the rank of Scientist III in recognition of her continued achievements as a Career Scientist.
Aiming to support the career and recognition of scientists in the public service, the Scientific Career System was established through Executive Order 784 and Executive Order 901, and was further strengthened by Republic Act 8439, also known as the Magna Carta for Scientists, Engineers, Researchers and other S & T Personnel in the Government.
Entry in the Scientific Career System is both an honor and a challenge, with those selected having at least a master’s degree in the sciences, as well as significant outputs and contributions in relevant fields of applied and natural science.
These include major publications such as scientific articles in international journals, books and compendiums, development of inventions, discoveries, practical applications of research findings and the training of the next generation of researchers, among others.
Former Congressman Marc Cojuangco and DOST Undersecretary for Research and Development Dr. Rowena Cristina Guevara (3rd and 4th from left) are joined by DOST-PNRI Director Dr. Carlo Arcilla (3rd from right) and other PNRI officials during the official opening of the 47th Atomic Energy Week on December 9, 2019 at the PNRI compound in Diliman, Quezon City.
House of Representatives Deputy Speaker Rodante Marcoleta delivered the keynote address for the opening ceremony on December 9, 2019. The representative applauded PNRI's efforts in developing the diverse applications of nuclear science in agriculture, medicine, industry, and the energy sector.
PNRI Celebrates the 47th Atomic Energy Week
With the Philippines celebrating its latest achievements in the field of nuclear science and technology, the Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (DOST-PNRI) will host the 47th Atomic Energy Week (AEW) from December 9-13, 2019 at the PNRI compound with the theme, “Nuclear Science and Technology for the People: Enabling Technologies for Sustainable Development".
Visitors were welcomed by an open-house showcase of several technical exhibits with free guided tours for all visitors, featuring the latest nuclear and radiation technologies, products and services by PNRI.
In his keynote address during the opening ceremony, House of Representatives Deputy Speaker Rodante Marcoleta applauded the Institute's continued progress in the development of nuclear and radiation applications for alleviating poverty through its diverse applications in various sectors.
Also present during the event are DOST Undersecretary for Research and Development Dr. Rowena Cristina Guevara and former Congressman Marc Cojuangco, who both challenged PNRI to intensify the campaign to revive nuclear energy in the Philippines.
The PNRI held its Technical Sessions on the afternoon of December 10 and December 11, with in-depth presentations by PNRI scientists and researchers on various nuclear and radiation applications in food and agriculture, health and medicine, industry, and the environment.
Meanwhile, thirty teams of high school students from across the country competed in the national level of the 2019 Philippine Nuclear Science Quiz (PNSQ) on December 12. This year, Philippine Science High School (PSHS) - Main Campus clinched the first place, followed by PSHS - SOCCSKSARGEN Region Campus for second place, Caloocan National Science and Technology High School in third place, and PSHS Central Visayas and Southern Mindanao campuses tied at fourth place.
The annual AEW celebration, as mandated under Presidential Proclamation No. 1211 in 1973, aims to generate awareness of the Filipino people on the beneficial uses of nuclear science and technology.
Dr. Jordan Madrid (middle), head of the PNRI Chemistry Research Section, receives the certificate of recognition for the Outstanding Utility Model Award during the 2019 Regional Invention Contest and Exhibits (RICE). They are joined by DOST NCR Director Jose Patalinjug III (2nd from right) and other officials. Photo by DOST-NCR
Mr. Patrick Jay Cabalar and Dr. Jordan Madrid of the Chemistry Research Section with their exhibit of the utility model “Composite Nonwoven Fabric Heavy Metal Adsorbent and Method for Preparing the Same” at the 2019 Regional Invention Contest and Exhibits (RICE).
PNRI Chemists Win 2019 RICE Award for Radiation Grafting Technology
For developing radiation grafting applications which can deal with toxic materials and other pollutants, scientists and researchers from the Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Nuclear Research Institute (DOST-PNRI) were among the winners during the 2019 DOST Regional Invention Contests and Exhibits (RICE) held on November 6 to 8, 2019.
Dr. Jordan Madrid, head of the PNRI Chemistry Research Section (CRS), CRS researcher Mr. Patrick Jay Cabalar and Dr. Lucille Abad, Career Scientist and Chief of PNRI’s Atomic Research Division, were awarded as Regional Winners for the National Capital Region under the Outstanding Utility Model Award for the PNRI-developed utility model entitled “Composite Nonwoven Fabric Heavy Metal Adsorbent and Method for Preparing the Same”.
Radiation can be used to modify materials and graft various polymers that can have advanced properties such as filtering various contaminants from water.
For this utility model, PNRI developed a nonwoven fabric from natural fibers such as abaca. Abaca continues to be useful and readily available as the Philippines remains its world’s largest producer, accounting for around 85% of the global production. The native material’s natural strength also makes it perfect for withstanding the grafting procedure, allowing it to serve as a base material.
The abaca would be grafted with synthetic polymers that can filter toxic heavy metals dissolved in liquid. Metals such as lead, cadmium, nickel, chromium, mercury and arsenic can become contaminants that are harmful to human health and the environment.
The materials are grafted using radiation at PNRI’s Electron Beam Irradiation Facility, after which it is further processed into its final form as a synthesized filter for heavy metals.
Studies showed that the nonwoven fabric is reusable and cheaper to use than commercial resins which have the same purpose, while also being on par, if not better, in filtering the waste.
PNRI was granted a utility model for the technology in 2019, and radiation grafted materials are expected to prove useful for various industries, particularly those requiring waste water treatment. Researchers are also looking forward to the development of other applications of radiation grafting such as producing biodiesel and recovering precious metals. The abaca-based adsorbent was developed under a project funded by the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (DOST-PCAARRD) and in cooperation with the Philippine Textile Research Institute (DOST-PTRI) which provided the abaca-polyester nonwoven fabric.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has also engaged in a project with the Philippines and other countries for the increasing use of these technologies to minimize hazardous pollutants in various bodies of water in the Asia-Pacific region.
The DOST 2019 RICE recognizes the efforts and hard work of Filipino inventors, researchers and students, encourages the development of inventions through competitions and highlights the role of the Filipino inventors in Philippine society and in the context of national economic development.