Cheap & Natural Way to Reduce Mosquito Nests by Engineering Students

Mosquitoes are insects that can carry diseases such as Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF), malaria, zika, and so on.

To control the breeding places for mosquitoes, Indonesia focuses more on the closure and abatization of baths, as well as burial of discarded items around shelters that actually have the opportunity to collect rainwater.

Mosquito control is also carried out using insecticides. One of the chemicals commonly used for controlling adult mosquitoes is malathion.

The nature of synthetic insecticides is difficult to decompose so that it will cause detrimental effects and disrupt non-target organisms and require relatively high costs.

One inexpensive idea is actually to prevent mosquitoes from getting close to waterlogged areas, such as clogged drains.

The use of mosquito repellent plants, one of which is geranium radula, is considered to be a new breakthrough because it does not cause impacts such as insecticides and other chemicals.

Moving on from this idea, three UB Faculty of Engineering students; Yalim Fikhoir, Sulthon Arsyad Alifudin, and Dimas Wahyu Cahya further researched the application of geranium radula.

In fact, its application is quite easy, that is by planting it near an open drainage drain, but with certain treatments to give effective results.

Based on research by Matsuda et al. (1996), it is stated that fresh geranium radula plants can repel mosquitoes as far as 0.93 m.

In addition, in order to give off a scent that mosquitoes do not like, the leaves must move, in this case, wind may helped.

Thus the open drainage dimension must meet a certain criteria. If the Geranium radula is planted on one side of the drain only, the width of the canal must be less than 1 m and if planted on both sides the maximum width of the canal is 2 m.

Radula geraniums must also be planted close together so that the leaves of these plants touch each other.

“If the plant moves by the wind, the leaves rub against each other and it can trigger the aromas of geranium radula which contained Geraiol and Sitronellol, so that the protected drainage area is bigger too,” explained Yalim as Team Leader.

Under the guidance of Ir. Mohammad Taufiq, MT., the team will compete in the 2020 National Student Scientific Week (PIMNAS) XXXIII next November.

“Hopefully this innovation can be useful and can be applied by the community in efforts to eradicate mosquito nests. So that it can reduce the number of diseases caused by mosquitoes,” hoped Yalim Fikhoir, representing his team. (YF/mic)