Appropriate Rural Technology Institute, Pune, India
This page describes some of the projects of the Appropriate Rural Technology Institute (ART) in Pune, india.
Rural energy from agrowaste: The fraction of the total crop biomass, that is economically not useful, is called agrowaste. Its proportion canvary from 20 to 70% of the total biomass.It is estimated that agriculture in India generates annually about 500 million tonnes ofagrowaste. ARTI has developed a number of technologies to utilise the agrowaste as domestic fuel. They are as follows:
Improved cookstoves: Woody agrowaste such as stalks of cotton and pegionpea are burnt directly in a woodburning cookstove. A traditionalrural cookstove, made of unfired clay, has a very low efficiency, it produces a lot of smoke and soot and it has a life of just a couple ofyears. The cookstoves developed by ARTI not only have a high efficiency of about 25%, but they also reduce the indoor air pollution. Being madeof cement concrete, they last for at least 5 years.
Fuel briquettes from light Agrowaste: Because most agricultural species are herbaceous, agricultural waste is generally in the form of leavesand thin stems. The act of threshing also results in generating powdery agrowaste. Agrowaste in these forms cannot be used as fuel in a woodburning stove, but it can be converted into charcoal briquettes by using a charring kiln based on the oven and retort system. The charcoalproduced in this kiln can be easily powdered, and mixed with a suitablebinder, it can be extruded into char briquettes.
Sarai stove-and-cooker system: This is an assembly, which is capable of cooking a meal for a family of five using just 100 g of char briquettes.A housewife, using a traditional wood-burning cookstove, would have to use about 3 kg wood for cooking the same amount of food.
User friendly biogas technology: The traditional biogas technology, based on cattle dung, is useful only to families having at least 6 to 8heads of cattle. Because of the low rate of gas generation per unit mass of dung, and long retention time of about 40 days, the smallest domesticdigester has a volume of about 2000 litres. Feeding daily about 40 kg cattle dung into the digester and disposing of daily about 80 kg ofeffluent slurry is a great bother. The new biogas plant developed by ARTI is much more user friendly. Having a capacity of 400 litres, ituses daily just 2 kg of starchy agrowaste (e.g. rhizomes of banana, canna, nutgrass), non-edible seeds (e.g. Leucaena, Sesbania, tamarind,mango kernels, spoilt grain), oilcake of nonedible oilseeds (Pongamia, Madhuka, castor), or leftover food. Its reaction time is just a fewhours. It produces just a couple of litres of watery effluent that is easy to dispose of.
Appropriate Rural Technology Institute [ARTI]
2nd Floor, Maninee Apartments,
Pune 411 041, India.
Phone: 91 020 4390348/4392284