Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Low input maize for biofuel (#journal)

Efficient biofuel production from traditional maize under low input

Traditional crop varieties are adapted to low inputs of fertilizers, pesticides, and water. The authors tested the suitability of traditional maize varieties as solid biofuel, cultivating traditional maize varieties without pesticides and irrigation and then measuring the heating value, the ash content, and the elemental composition. Results show that plants harvested at maturity, 150 days after sowing, have about 10 % more biomass and 20–30 % less ash, N, K, and Cl than plants harvested 115 days after sowing. Traditional maize varieties can produce an energy of 15–23 · 104 MJ/ha. These findings demonstrate that traditional maize cultivation can be optimized to increase the efficiency of biomass production and to reduce the environmental impact.

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