September 28, 2007 (VietNamNet) – A group of researchers from the HCM City-based Institute for Tropical Biology is conducting a pilot project, in which they plant Purging nut (Jatropha curcas L.) to process bio-fuel.The researchers have grown purging nut in the southern province of Binh Phuoc, which has suitable weather and soil conditions for this kind of tree. Purging nut can release fruit from six to twelve months.
According to researchers, the oil content of seed of purging nut is around 35-45% so one hectare of purging nut can produce 2,500 to 3,000l of bio-diesel a year.
They said that it is quite simple to produce bio-diesel from the oil of purging nut seed. Methanol and potassium hydroxide are two basic, cheap chemicals used to make bio-diesel from purging nut oil.
The waste of purging nut seed can be used to produce organic fertilizer because it contains high content of protein and some anti-pesticide compounds.
This kind of plant is drought resistant and it can develop on exhausted soil, sandy soil, etc. Purging nut is also good for protecting soil and to prevent erosion on hills. It is also one kind of perennial tree, which has a life span of 30-40 years.
This tropical crop is native to Mexico and Central America, but is cultivated in many other Latin American, Asian and African countries as a hedge.