Ripple is a biodegradable boogie board for short term beach vacationers. Most boogie boards are made from Styrofoam; which by most estimates will take centuries to breakdown. Ripple is made from kozo fibers, coconut coir, cationic starches, recycled paper pulp, persimmon juice and region specific dune grass and flower seeds. Ripple is designed to be buried at the high tide mark at the conclusion of vacation. Ripple will breakdown and the seeds will grow to fortify the dune ecosystem and help prevent erosion. Ripple allows beachgoers to enjoy their time at the beach and offers lessons on sustainability, erosion, and the capabilities of natural materials in manufacturing.
Creating a biodegradable boogie board minimizes coastal waste by leaving no trace of environmentally toxic foams or plastics. Ripple can be manufactured by being molded with our natural materials and sealed with kakishibu persimmon juice, to which madder root or weld extracts can be added to adjust colors. Coconut rope will be tied through the holes in the board to create a leash. The leash uses the Scaffold knot and Ashley Stopper knot rather than the traditional velcro. The Scaffold knot and Ashley Stopper knot have the same safety advantages of velcro. The boogie board stays connected to the user, but it has a give point so that if pulled too hard it pulls free and will not hurt the user. The instructions are printed on the board with Living Ink. Living Ink is made from extracting pigment from harvested algae. Algae is another problem coastal areas are dealing with in today's society. Algae grows fast and lives a short life before it begins to decay. This process consumes oxygen from the water suffocating aquatic life in the process. Printing the simple instructional graphics on the back of the boogie board eliminates the need of packaging for Ripple. Coastal erosion is responsible for roughly $500 million per year in coastal property loss in the United States. Ripple contains region specific dune grass seeds, and flowers. It was designed to be buried directly into the sand at the high tide mark at the end of the user's vacation to help fight back against erosion. Dune grass is critical to preventing erosion. The dense root system holds the sand in place when there are storm surges. The growth of dune grass, from seeds in Ripple, prevents erosion during coastal flooding and from rising sea levels. Each board contains the seeds of two types of dune grass and one type of beach flower. This is to encourage biodiversity among the dune ecosystem and so that one type of plant doesn't become dominant. After deciding on the region specific dune flower seeds for the South Atlantic, North Atlantic, and West Coast Region of the United States we noticed that the colors that were most apparent in the flowers were a pink-red and yellow. Red and yellow are also the colors used typically by lifeguards for safety purposes because they are the easiest colors to see in the water. Persimmon dye is also naturally a muted red color but because it contains tannins Madder can be added to naturally dye the board more red and weld extract can be added to dye it more yellow. Each board contains two kinds of dune grass and one kind of flower. The board color is determined by which types of flowers it will bloom when the board is planted. Selling Ripple through coastal vendors will contribute to the economy by connecting with and promoting local businesses. This connects tourists back to the local economy they are visiting and educates them about the environment they are visiting at the same time. Ripples are formed on the sand when the wind or water moves over loose sediment. They build up upon one another and can eventually form sand dunes. Ripples internal support structure uses this same ripple design. Ripple was designed to be a fun educational opportunity to bring awareness to sustainability, through parent-child conversations. Just like how ripples on a beach are small beginnings to one-day sand dunes; our hope is that Ripple is a small beginning to someone's new life of sustainability, and an inspiration for what applications sustainable materials could be used for in the future.