Petrol and diesel consumption in the world are getting higher every day and running out of it looks sooner than later. What better alternative than the 'used cooking oil' to fuel your automobiles in the future.
Let us take a moment and imagine a future which could house a fuel station at your home itself, use the cooking oil from your home to cook food and fuel your vehicle as well. Well, this is going to eliminate the entire process of going to a fuel station to quench your fuel requirements.
This is called thinking out of the box, a group of engineering students from Kochi in Kerala wanted to find a new solution to the fuel used in automobiles. Hence, they started a project on alternative fuel.
The new fuel is a 'used cooking oil', yes, that's right, the oil used for cooking. Athul Geo, Rahul CV, Ajin CM and Raveen Kumar, all final year students selected a project on biofuel as their project.
And what best motorcycle to experiment on, the Royal Enfield which is always a model for customization and experiments. They even made their project a bit more attractive by making the RE logo as "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle".
Athul, the team leader on the project, says "I've read about fuel made from waste in other countries and I thought why not try it here". His team was enthusiastic even though they faced initial setbacks.
"In most shops and restaurants, they don't change the oil in which they fry food, the same product can be made using fresh coconut oil. But that isn't economically viable." The team found it difficult to find methanol which is a key element to burn your fuel.
"We used the fuel continuously for a few days in an old bullet and noticed that the pollution levels came down," says Athul.
"The initial product that we got didn't look even a bit like diesel or petrol. It was very viscous and would clog easily," says Athul. "This wouldn't let the machines work at low temperatures," he adds.
However, they finally were successful and are being approached for large scale production. "We are asked to collaborate with a company that acquires used cooking oil at large scales," Athul says.
Also, they worked on a small quantity and hence the cost of a litre of this biofuel came to Rs. 76, Athul says, when produced on a large scale then it can cost around Rs. 30 for a litre.
You can reach out to Athul through email - Athulgo@gmail.com.
Source: The New Indian Express