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A Case Study of Energy Balance and Economic Analysis of Castor Cultivation in Iran

Arefe Razzazi1, Majid AghaAlikhani1,2, Barat Ghobadian1,2, Mohammad Safieddin2, and Behnam Zand3
1. Tarbiat Modares University, Agronomy Department, Tehran, Iran
2.Tarbiat Modares University, Dep. Mechanics of Agricultural Machinery, Tehran, Iran
3. Agriculture and Natural Resources Research Center, Tehran, Iran
Abstract—Castor bean (Ricinus communis L.( with 50 percent of oil content and high- quality, is one of the best crop used to produce biodiesel. The first step toward introduction and widespread cultivation of the crop is to investigate the energy balance and economic analysis for its production in the field. To do so, energy input (include renewable and nonrenewable) and output were calculated during a two years field experiment (2012-2014) in Tehran-Iran. Energy indicators were also assessed. Result showed Indirect and non-renewable sources of energy with 59.68 and 80.86 percent of 11245.64 Mega Joule energy consumption respectively, and comprise the major part of the consumable energy in castor bean cultivation. Moreover, fertilizers and pesticides considered as the most energy inputs, i.e. 55.26 percent of the total consumable energy. Fuels follow that with 21.28 percent and formed a large part of the total consumable energy. Energy use efficiency in Castor seed production was calculated to be 3.81, which is a considerable amount when compared with other crops used to produce biodiesel. According to economic analysis result, castor is an affordable source for biodiesel production. But the height of this plant is a major problem to expand the cost efficient and mechanized system of castor production. Therefore, breeding of the current local ecotypes is recommended. 

Index Terms—biodiesel, energy use efficiency, net energy gain, energy efficiency and bioethanol

Cite:  Arefe Razzazi, Majid AghaAlikhani, Barat Ghobadian, Behnam Zand, and Mohammad Safieddin, "A Case Study of Energy Balance and Economic Analysis of Castor Cultivation in Iran," Journal of Advanced Agricultural Technologies, Vol. 4, No. 3, pp. 290-295, September 2017. Doi: 10.18178/joaat.4.3.290-295
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