UNAIR Students Produce KUMAK to Prevent Mercury Poisoning

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KUMAK, Pharmaceutical UNAIR students’ product (Photo: Special)

UNAIR NEWS – Industrial development now has been considered to make negative effects which make people suffer losses if there is no responsibility from the company. There is much waste thrown directly to rivers without waste management process, so there is mercury in the water. Mercury is substance with negative effects such as causing nerves damage, digestive system or kidney damage. Besides found in the water, there is also cosmetic products which illegally distributed in public.

The phenomenon then inspired five students from Faculty of Pharmacy Universitas Airlangga (UNAIR), Erwin Chandra Christiawan (2014),  Ayu Tarantika Indreswari (2013),  Hatif Indra Nur Septiyanti (2014),  Rendha Kusumaning Kristiwi (2014) and Hawi Queen Nisa (2014) to create a device to test mercury level so people can use it to detect mercury easily to water or cosmetics without going to a laboratory.

Perlengkapan Produk KUMAK (Foto: Istimewa)
KUMAK Product (Photo: Special)

This mercury test device was named KUMAK “Kit Uji Merkuri dalam Air dan Kosmetik” which consists of porcelain cup to test cosmetics, reaction tube to test water and also with gloves and cleaner. The substance in KUMAK was from  KI and HCl o.5 N to avoid risk for the users, as the compound was a little reactive and safe to use.

The way to use KUMAK is by dropping the first solution. After that, there will be change. If positive, water turns reddish pink, and if negative will turn yellow. In cosmetics, if mercury is identified there will be pink color then orange spots. Second solution is to confirm the fist solution so it will give accurate results.

“At first we just made one solution. But after having a consultation to supervising lecturer, he suggested to to use two solutions to test mercury level and use the journal as the references,” she said  as a team leader.

KUMAK products were produced in Faculty of Pharmacy, and then it was packaged in one of the members team. “We hope that our products still produced even though the euphoria of UKM has been over because we want to learn business. Next, we also expect to have patent right for our product from Drug and Food Monitoring Agency,” said Erwin.

Author : Afifah Nurrosyidah
Editor : Dilan Salsabila

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