Oct 15, 2019
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State of Second Generation Biofuels in India

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Whereas the time period biofuels denotes any gas comprised of organic sources, for many sensible makes use of, the time period refers to both biodiesel or ethanol.

The previous few years have seen super progress in biofuels.

Throughout this era, the business has advanced from first technology feedstocks and processes to their second and third technology counterparts.

The phrases first, second and third technology is generally used within the context of feedstock. As an example, corn and maize signify first technology ethanol feedstocks. Switchgrass is without doubt one of the standard second technology ethanol feedstocks, representing the broad class of cellulosic ethanol feedstocks.


First technology biodiesel feedstock – Feedstock comparable to soybeans, palm, canola and rapeseed are thought-about first technology feedstock for biodiesel manufacturing. Most first technology biodiesel feedstock (s) comprised (are they not used now?) Meals crops. Whereas the primary technology feedstocks helped the biodiesel business begin off the blocks, they posed critical challenges by way of risk to human meals chain and ecology.

Second technology biodiesel feedstock – Non-food vitality crops comparable to Jatropha signify the second technology biodiesel feedstock. As well as, utilizing applied sciences comparable to biomass to liquid (BTL), many different non-food crops may very well be transformed to biodiesel, and these represent the second technology biodiesel feedstock as effectively. These feedstocks have the benefit of not affecting the human meals chain.

Third technology biodiesel feedstock – Feedstocks comparable to algae are thought-about to belong to the third technology of biodiesel feedstocks. These feedstock supply superior yields, they don’t straight have an effect on the human meals chain, and they are often grown in locations unsuitable for agriculture. On account of the above benefits, many consultants opine that the third technology biofuel feedstocks alone have the potential to exchange most or the entire fossil gas demand worldwide.


First technology ethanol feedstock – The primary technology ethanol feedstock comprised corn, sugarcane, maize and so forth. Ethanol derived from these feedstocks usually makes use of the starch element current in them. Much like feedstocks for biodiesel, these feedstocks current the issues of adversely affecting meals costs and incapability to scale.

Second technology ethanol feedstock – A lot of non-food and waste biomass feedstocks are wealthy in cellulosic materials, and this may be transformed into ethanol as effectively. The cellulose-based feedstocks are known as the second technology ethanol feedstock. The second technology ethanol feedstocks overcome the 2 predominant bottlenecks current for the primary technology feedstocks.

Second Technology Biofuels within the Indian Context

World over, most governments and corporations are more and more turning to second technology feedstocks for biofuel manufacturing.

How related are the second technology biofuel feedstocks for India? What's the longer term potential for making India oil impartial utilizing these feedstocks? What are the obstacles and challenges that might stop us from reaching this potential?

Second Technology Biodiesel – Jatropha

India has made vital progress with regard to second technology biodiesel feedstock, due to the early efforts by many firms in Jatropha cultivation. To a big extent, the second technology biofuels phenomenon in India is spearheaded by the Jatropha crop.

As of end-2009, over 1 million hectares in India have been planted with the Jatropha crop in India; that is the most important acreage of jatropha cultivation in a single nation as of 2010. By 2015, India is anticipated to have over 2 million hectares beneath jatropha cultivation.

The federal government of India has additionally offered various incentives for Jatropha cultivation as part of India's aim to realize vitality independence by the yr 2015. The Authorities has recognized 400,000 sq. kilometers (98 million acres) of land the place Jatropha could be grown, hoping it would change 20 p.c of India's diesel consumption by 2011.

Nonetheless, most of the Jatropha efforts have confronted various obstacles and challenges. The main issues with Jatropha have been its less-than-expected yield, higher-than-expected prices of cultivation and unavailability of scientific consultants who can information the business. Whereas various states in India have nonetheless dedicated to increasing the world beneath the Jatropha crop, many plans by governments and companies are being placed on maintain owing to the poor success of the crop worldwide. That stated nevertheless, the longer term for Jatropha biodiesel remains to be vibrant, contemplating the inherent strengths of the vitality crop and the distinct chance that the crucial issues will get sorted out within the subsequent few years.

Second Technology Ethanol – Cellulosic Ethanol

The situation within the case of second technology ethanol (cellulosic ethanol) is worse than that for second technology (Jatropha) biodiesel.

Worldwide, cellulosic ethanol manufacturing is just not but at a industrial stage. Many of the efforts on this area are within the late pilot phases and are anticipated to enter industrial manufacturing solely by 2011. Analysis and pilot phases for cellulosic ethanol manufacturing have to this point been primarily restricted to North America (US and Canada).

In India (and in Asia as effectively), large-scale analysis efforts or investments into cellulosic ethanol have been few and much between. Whereas various firms in associated industries had publicly introduced that they’re eager on exploring cellulosic ethanol, investments on floor have been few. Consequently, cellulosic ethanol is unlikely to make an affect in India till 2014.


Primarily based on the above discussions, we infer the next

· In concept, second technology biofuels maintain glorious potential for India, each for biodiesel and ethanol

· For Jatropha biodiesel, whereas there was a number of hype created about it potential, there are a variety of operational issues in cultivation and yields. Consequently, biodiesel manufacturing from the crop has a lot lower than anticipated, and it’s anticipated that it will take a couple of extra years of R&D and experimentations earlier than the crop efficiency could be improved.

· There have been no vital investments made into cellulosic ethanol R&D both by the Indian authorities or by the company. Consequently, it’s unlikely that there might be any progress on the bottom for cellulosic ethanol in India for the following 4-5 years.

· In sum, will probably be at the very least 4-5 years earlier than second technology biofuel can begin making a significant contribution to India's gas wants.

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