Student Soybean Project Innovation Contest Winners

Event Date: April 8, 2014
Soots team
Two sophomore Agricultural Engineering students are part of the runner-up team in this year's contest!

Congratulations to all teams that successfully completed the Purdue University Student Soybean Product Innovation Competition.

This competition covers almost two semesters and requires that student teams come up with new and innovative ways to use soy in products.

Students who participate come from all degree areas and many are from Agricultural & Biological Engineering.

Team Soots produced a 100% organic leather boot conditioner and polish by the same name. The product comes in two forms: One, made from soybean oil and beeswax, is a thick, more solid polish for genuine leather such as boots and reins and also serves as a waterproofing agent. The product is safe for the environment and not harmful to animals. The second product is a much lighter conditioner, in the form of a spray, that can be used on faux leather items. It is used more for cleaning and improving appearance than waterproofing.

Members are Sean Anderson of Churubusco, Ind., a junior in forestry; his brother, Evan, a sophomore in agricultural engineering; and Sara Richert of Oak Park, Ill., a sophomore in agricultural engineering.

Students who participate come from all degree areas and many are from Agricultural & Biological Engineering.  Here are two teams composed of all ABE students.

Team Naoleym

Team Members:  Srishti Khurana, Ziyang Zhou, Evan Wibawa and Xun Zhou

Team Advisors:   Ganesan Narsimhan & Corinne Alexander

The objective of this project is to make soy-based blotting paper with higher oil absorbing ability. The product is called Naoleym, which is a combination word from Latin. “Oleum” is “oil” in Latin, ‘na” means “no”.  Combining “Na” and “Oleum” together gives the name of the product “Naoleym”, which means oil-free. Unlike current paper-making processes, soy straw, a byproduct of soy production, will be used to replace wood or grass fiber to make the paper. Soy proteins are embedded to enhance the oil absorbing and retaining capacity. Lab experiments illustrate a 5 – 30% improvement on the amount of oil absorbed per unit mass of paper sheet when compared to regular paper and commercialized blotting paper. 

Team SoiaTek

Team Members:  Lauren Summers, Reid Bonner, William Waterstreet & Daniel Paladino

Team Advisors:   Martin Okos & Eric Holloway

With the ever-increasing consumer base in electronic touch screen devices,there is an increase in demand for screen protectors that protect the screen while not limiting the functionality of the device. This increase in the need for screen protection has created a large number of discarded petroleum-based screen protectors, which take an extensive length of time to break down. Our goal was to reduce the amount of plastic refuse by utilizing soy components that are non-toxic to the environment. Additionally, we wanted to maximize the usage of soy in order to minimize component waste. To accomplish this task, we employed the use of soy protein isolates, soybean oil, soy lecithin, glycerin (a byproduct of soy biodiesel production) and water. By varying the amounts of each component, we were able to optimize the properties desired in a screen protector made purely from soy.

Other Students from ABE who participated:  David Rokhinson, Stephen Tucker, Chandler Keown, Matthew Pharris, Evan Anderson, Sara Richert, Amanda Kreger, Lingyu Yang, Lanchen Wu, Kristen Hector, Sarah Cox, Isaac Chavez, Barron Hewetson, Stephanie Schramm,Yi Wen, Jiayun Yu, Leyla Kahyaoglu, and Necla Eren.

Faculty from ABE who served as Advisors for the competition:  Nate Mosier, Ganesan Narsimhan, Bernie Engel, Natalie Carroll, Klein Ileleji, Jiqin Ni, Martin Okos, Abigail Engelberth, and Jenna Rickus.  Thank you to all advisors for their help and support.

The Purdue University Student Soybean Product Innovation Competition celebrated its 20th anniversary this year with a record fifteen teams competing for the top prize of $20,000.  The runner-up earned $10,000 for their soy-based entry.

For additional information visit the competition web page at  -