In the current race for alternate fuels, a new contender has joined up.
After staying in the shadows for the past few decades, this contender has recently gained enough popularity & fame due to its ease of production and as a probable contender to replace the current diesel.
The Organic-diesel (or popularly known as Biodiesel) can be used as an organic alternative to the conventional diesel, which is being used in most of our heavy machinery.
While, in some engines this fuel can be directly used as an alternative to diesel, in others, it needs to be blended with the conventional petro-diesel before it can be used.
Another application where this fuel can be directly used, is as heating oil for domestic heating as well as industrial heating.
Compared to the conventional diesel, Biodiesel is a better fuel, as it is a lubricating agent for engine. It reduces the engine’s wear & tear and increases its life. Biodiesel has a lower flashpoint and can ignite at a temperature lower than diesel. Compared to diesel, it has 9% lower calorific value, but is 3.5% higher in density that makes up for the loss of power.
Biodiesel is an organic fuel and can be produced by treating vegetable oil or as an animal fat by-product. In addition, it can be grown from plants like Jatropha, Rapeseed or Soybean. Jatropha, compared to its peers, gives a high yield of approx 2200 Gallons per hectare. As an advantage, Jatropha bush is resistant to pest and harsh temperature differences; hence proves out to be quite a commercially viable crop to be raised even on small agricultural lands as well.
With the global pressure building up to adopt the efficient and alternative fuels, the production of biodiesel has gone up considerably in the past years. Since 2002, it is seeing an upward average growth of over 40% per year. From the initial production of 2.2 Million Tons in 2002, the current production levels have touched 11 Million Tons. The capacity of production has further risen from 3 Million Tons to 32 Million Tons for the same period.
The production of such alternative fuels has increased our security & sustainability and has given us an insight, that world can run on alternative carbon fuels as well. Fuels like this may not be as cleaner like Solar or Wind Energy, but still they can be produced organically, without causing much harm to our environment.
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