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When you burn Jatropha oil in a lamp, a fine soot is emitted. Actually this soot is Activated Carbon, which adsorbs poisonous materials from air, cleans the air, and reduces Respiratory problems. In most parts of India, the lighting of lamp at night is a normal practice. Also there is no Electric Power Supply for 4 to 14 hours a day in rural India. In light of this and ever worsening scenario, Traditional Indian Jatropha Oil Lamp and Lantern are the only Hope of Light for Rural India. Though the lumen output efficiency of these is 10 to 20% less than that of Electric Lamps, these are simple and economic. These can spread light in the life of people in rural areas. Use of the Crude Jatropha Oil as fuel for these lamps is more pressing than the use of it for manufacture of BioDiesel, as diesel is easily available. Farmers can grow the jatropha trees on fence and extract oil from seeds locally, using hand operated expellers, and they can use it locally.
Aboriginal Development Initiative With A Sustainable Income
Many NGOs which work for upliftment of Tribals have found this model very effective. There are two schemes.
Seed cake has C:N ratio of 40. Most of the Carbon is converted to BioGas and C:N ratio is reduced to 10. Large protein molecules in cake are broken down to smaller molecules. The cake coming out of BioGas plant is then further processed in a simple, low cost, BioFertilizer plant as shown below. The smaller protein molecules are further broken down in BioFertilizer plant, which can be absorbed by plants as fertilizer.
In these sheds the seed cake is eaten by earthworms (shown below) and bacteria to produce BioFertilizer. Water is sprinkled on the cake heap, which is kept moist at all times. It is turned upside down once a day. It may take 3 to 4 months to complete the process. It provides employment to a number of tribals.
If the people in the village plant Jatropha on 10 acres of fallow land, they can get at least 2 tons of Jatropha seeds (500 liters of Jatropha oil) after 1 year, 5 tons of Jatropha seeds (1,250 liters of Jatropha oil) after 2 years and 10 tons of Jatropha seeds (2,500 liters of Jatropha oil) every year after 3 years. This can satisfy the needs of liquid fuel for Lighting and Cooking. (Jatropha oil, expelled from seeds using hand operated oil expellers, can replace Kerosene or Lamp oil in these two applications and oil can be used in small low RPM Engines shown below). A village can become self-sufficient in its energy needs.
Initially, most of the oil will be used in small engines and for lighting in Traditional Indian Oil Lamps and Lanterns since it will be easier for farmer to process the seeds locally, and he can get better value for his produce locally. It will also be used in big Diesel Engine based Electricity Generating sets, Pump Sets, Heavy Farm Machinery, where the viscosity of oil is not an issue. The requirement for this sector is 20 to 25 million tons per year.