|Title of Invention||
COCOLIFE (COCONUT FERTILIZER BRIQUETTE EMBEDDED IN COIRPITH HOLLOW BRIQUETTE)
|Abstract||The Cocolife (Coconut fertilizer briquette embedded in composted coirpith hollow briquette with end product specification of 200mm x 100mm x 66mm) is developed to simplify the nutrient application by dig and place method through briquetting fertilizer mixture cum adhesives combinations for trees and wide spaced crops, particularly for increasing nutrient use efficiency with balanced slow release nutrient potential. Another aspect of the invention relates to enhancing water availability for nutrient solubilisation in water scarce areas through embedding the coconut fertilizer briquette in coirpith housing briquette. We claim the patent of 1. Coconut fertilizer briquette embedded in coirpith hollow briquette, 2. Coconut fertilizer briquette of claim 1 with its fertilizer mixture plus adhesive composition and 3. Coirpith hollow briquette of claim 1 which is formed by two coirpith hollow rings and two lids.|
This invention relates to simplification of nutrient application through briquetting by dig and place method for trees and wide spaced crops, particularly for increasing nutrient use efficiency with balanced slow release nutrient potential and more particularly to commercial fertilizer briquette for coconut. Another aspect of the invention relates to enhancing water availability for nutrient solubilisation in water scarce areas through embedding the coconut fertilizer briquette in coirpith housing briquette.
In Indian agriculture, the reduction in animal population leads to lesser availability of farmyard manure for crops. Also, the recurrent drought and water scarcity lead to negligence and or imbalanced fertilizer management in tree crops. This results in reduction of crop productivity and increased the incidence of pest and disease, thus the sustainability become questionable. At present the method (half circle method) of fertilizer application to trees like coconut is laborious and more costlier. This increasing cost in manpower ultimately reduces the farmer's interest on fertilizer application itself. Therefore, the patent material was aimed as a single technique to solve the FYM shortage, water scarcity problem and imbalanced fertilizer application besides being less labour intensive.
In India, Coconut is one of the major oil yielding crops, cultivated in 1.84 mha and producing 12597 million nuts. The southern states like Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka contribute 80% of total area and production. After splitting the kernel from the nut, the fibrous shell is known as coconut husk. This becomes the raw material of coir industry. At present 11 lakh tonnes of coconut husk are separated and out of this 35% only used for coir production. About 6000 units of such coir industries are running, which employing 5 lakh people (82% women), off this Kerala alone employs 3.85 lakh people in 4500 units, while in Tamil Nadu around 680 units are involved in coir production releasing huge coir waste to the environment. Total coconut husk contain 90 g of fibre + 180 g of coir pith (i.e.) extraction of 1 kg of coir fibre leaves 2 kg of coir pith as waste. Since husk itself a waste of Coconut oil industry, the coir pith is a waste of waste. The waste outcome from these coir units in India was 7.5 lakh tones of coir pith and Tamil Nadu alone contributes 2 lakh tonnes (i.e.) 26%. These wastes are kept as heap and burnt on roadsides, which creates greater pollution hazard. Considering the water holding capacity of the Coir pith (400-600% of water as its volume), it can be reused as compost in Agriculture, which could result in increased water use efficiency and thereby crop productivity.
Several studies involving composted coir pith was found to replace the FYM requirement. Kadalli et al (2000) inferred that application of coir compost along with NPK increased grain and straw yield of maize crop. Studies indicated that coir dust application improved the physical characters like infiltration rate, total porosity and hydraulic conductivity in red soil, (Loganathan, 1990; Riazuddin Ahmed, 1993).
Application of composted coir pith reduced the salinity hazard of irrigation water significantly than other amendment (Bagavathiammal et al., 2000). However, they have indicated that compost posses huge volume leading to handling difficulties. Here the patent seeking innovation which involves briquetting technique reduces the volume of compost.
The efficacy of NPK sources evaluated in terms of nutrient release pattern from them and influence on yield, quality and nutrient uptake clearly indicated the superiority of compressed tablet (Plate. 1) form of NPK sources (Developed by Fertilizers and Chemicals Trivancore limited, Cochin ) than straight fertilizer (Jegadeeswaran, 2002). This compressed tablet was directly made from nutrient source and production is very costlier. More advanced techniques and machineries are required. The tablet is at its second stage of field trial and not commercially released as fertilizer.
Prabhakaran and Subramanian (2001) reported that the yield of Soybean in composted coir pith applied plot with irrigation at 0.7 IW/CPE was on par with irrigation at 0.9 IW/CPE without coir pith application.
Details of invention
A research was conducted at TNAU Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India during 2002-04, to find out the possibility of combining high water holding capacity and nutrient substitutability of composted Coir pith with slow nutrient release potential of compressed fertilizer mixture. This was made possible by briquetting inorganic fertilizer mixture of coconut and then composted coir pith hollow briquette was developed for housing the coconut fertilizer briquette. The final product was assessed for its applicability and cost benefit over normal practice of fertilizer application for coconut plantation and named as "Cocolife"
The main objectives are;
A. Briquetting coconut fertilizer mixture for enhancing nutrient use efficiency
B. Developing coirpith hollow briquette to embed coconut fertilizer
briquette for increasing stability, transportability of fertilizer briquette in
addition to increasing water storage for nutrient solubilisation
C. Assessing nutrient and water use efficiency by experimentation
Then each main objective was simplified by splitting into sub objectives as below;
A. Briquetting coconut fertilizer mixture
a. Selecting best combination of coconut fertilizer for briquetting mixture with
less volume and cost
b. Selecting suitable adhesive for increasing briquette compactness
c. Developing suitable mechanical die for briquetting coconut fertilizer mixture
B. Developing coirpith hollow briquette to embed coconut fertilizer briquette
a. Developing suitable dies for briquetting coirpith housing quickly and easily
C. Assessing nutrient and water use efficiency by experimentation
a. Laboratory studies for nutrient release pattern for assessing slow release
b. Field study for water use efficiency, nutrient use efficiency and evaluation of
its labour requirement and cost effectiveness
Methodology A. Briquetting coconut fertilizer mixture
a. Selecting best combination of fertilizer mixture to reduce volume and cost Step 1: The tree most suffered with water stress is Coconut. So the nutrient requirement of coconut tree 560: 320: 1200 g NPK / Tree/ Year was selected for the research. Step 2: Addition to NPK requirement micronutrient mix was also added. Neem cake is used to coat Urea for the slow release of nutrient
Step 3: Different combination were tried to bring total NPK requirement. The general practice i.e. normally followed by farmers and the best one were given in Table 1 & 2 Table 1 Fertilizer combination per coconut tree -1 set (General practice)
Step 5: Considering the root tolerance and for easy handling, the quantity of fertilizer
mixture for one tree was divided into six i.e. one sixth of nutrient constitute into one
Step 6: After fixing the volume of total fertilizer then compressibility of fertilizer
mixture was assessed. By compressing the volume of fertilizer is reduced by 45 % of
total volume (i.e. 100 ml become 55 ml)
b. Selecting suitable adhesive for increasing briquette compactness
Step 7: The stability of the product was assessed. The briquette did not with stand even
the slight pressure. The Murate of potash was, resisted the compactness.
Step 8: Various adhesive materials were also added and tested for stability and
applicability. Among that adhesive 1 and 2 were somewhat cheaper and holds good.
Step 9: Different combination of adhesives 1 and 2 were mixed with fertilizer mixture
and tried for Briquetting (Table 3)
Step 10: Among the combinations the set IV was found best. After compressing, a single briquette (i.e., 1/6 of total fertilizer requirement of coconut per annum) had the total weight of 785 g and volume of 425 ml, respectively.
c. Developing die for briquetting coconut fertilizer mixture
Step 11: Based on that, the perfect fertilizer mixture die was developed with the output
dimensions of 164mm x 72mm x 36 mm (Fig.l a & b and Plate 2a & b)
B. Developing coirpith hollow briquette to embed coconut fertilizer briquette Step 1: Different methods of housing box using composted coirpith were tried and from that simple one was selected. The coirpith used for housing is partially decomposed and with 14 percent moisture content. The briquetting machine used is vertical press type.
a. Separate plate method:
This method needs two dies for producing plates with the dimensions of 170x75x15 and 100x75xl5(mm) respectively. Four bigger plates and two small plates form the Housing box. Here assembling six pieces was very laborious and suitable gum was needed and hence found not suitable. (Fig. 2a)
b. Hollow box and lid method:
This method need two dies with the dimensions of 200x100x70mm (Outer) 175x70x40mm (Inner) Hollow box and 200x100x15mm lid. In this, the base of hollow box was compacted well but the side walls of hollow box were not compacted and hence collapsed. (Fig. 2b)
c. Two Hollow box method:
Since the above method fails to concrete compactness in side walls the height of side walls were reduced in to half and planned to join two hollow box to form a single housing. This method was very simple and one die was enough to produce housing, but here also the stability of sidewall was less. So this method was also dropped. This method need further elaborate study. (Fig. 2c)
d. Hollow housing ring and lid method: (Method claimed for patent)
This method need two dies producing rectangular hollow rings with the dimensions of 200mm x 100mm x 18mm (outer), 170mm x 75mm x 18mm (inner) and a lid 200mm x 100mm xl5mm. Here two hollow rectangular rings constitute the centre part and form the housing of fertilizer mix briquette and two lid close the upper and lower opening of the housing. This method was found to be simple and stability of housing also good. Hence this method was used for housing the coconut fertilizer mixture briquette. (Fig. 3a,b,c,d,e & f and Plate 3a,b,c&d)
Assembling of coconut fertilizer briquette and coir pith hollow briquette housing
First the hollow housing was assembled by placing two coir pith hollow rectangular ring above the bottom lid. Then the coconut fertilizer briquette was embedded in the housing and covered with coir pith top lid. This entire set was simply tied with jute to form the single unit of Coconut fertilizer briquette embedded in coir pith hollow briquette. Hence this product had developed to sustain the productivity of coconut, was named as 'COCOLIFE'. (Fig.4a, b, c & d and Plate 4)
C. Assessing nutrient and water use efficiency
(Note: since patenting is pertaining to method of developing coirpith hollow briquette
embedded with coconut fertilizer briquette. So detailed data on release pattern are not
a. Laboratory studies for nutrient release pattern confirming slow release
To assess the nutrient release pattern of the product at lab level leachate collection method was adopted. A big poly dub sized 60cm high and 45 cm diameter had taken and a 15mm diameter PVC pipe was attached at the bottom. A filter is provided at the opening of inner PVC end to arrest the soil movement. Then pure sand previously analysed for initial nutrient status and physical character was filled in it leaving some space (5cm) in the top for watering. The developed product was placed at 15 cm and was covered by sand. The same procedure is followed to have another set for farmer's practice of fertilizer application.
Then 5 liters of water was added to both and leachate was collected. The collected leachate was measured and analysed for nutrients. Further 1500 ml of water was added at 12 hrs intervals and leachate collected was measured and analysed for nutrients released upto l5 days. The results confirmed that briquette resist the solubility of nutrient resulted in slow release of nutrient than the farmer's method of application.
b. Field study for water use efficiency, nutrient use efficiency and evaluation of its simplicity
(Note: since patenting is pertaining to method of developing coirpith hollow briquette embedded with coconut fertilizer briquette. So detailed data on release pattern are not given)
The water and nutrient use efficiency were evaluated by applying the product (3 per six month) for two years to similar phenologically characterized coconut trees. The irrigation levels also varied to confirm the use efficiency. Farmer's method of fertilizer application also adopted with same set of irrigation treatments. The results confirmed the advantages of higher nutrient and water use efficiency than farmers practice.(Table 4) Table 4. Comparison of 'Cocolife' and Farmers method of fertilizer application
4. We claim the patent of the following
A. Coconut fertilizer briquette with the fertilizer mixture cum adhesive combination of Urea + Neem cake(9:l) -166.67g DAP- 116.67g, Murate of Potash - 333.33g, Micro Nutrient mixture - 41.67g, and Adhesive 1 - 91.67g with the specification of 174 mm x 72 mm x 36 mm; (volume 425 ml and weighing 750 g) embedded in composted coirpith hollow briquette with the specification (Hollow rectangular rings with the dimensions of 200mm x 100mm x 18mm (outer), 170mm x 75mm x 18mm (inner) and a lid 200mm x 100mm xl5mm) , where two hollow rectangular rings constitute the centre part and form the housing of fertilizer mix briquette and two lids close the upper and lower side of the housing. The entire unit is tied with jute twine to make it a coconut fertilizer briquette embedded in coirpith hollow briquette 'Cocolife'
|Indian Patent Application Number||1044/CHE/2004|
|PG Journal Number||50/2007|
|Date of Filing||11-Oct-2004|
|Name of Patentee||DR. GANESAN DHEEBAKARAN|
|Applicant Address||TAMIL NADU AGRICULTURAL UNIVERSITY, COIMBATORE - 641 003,|
|PCT International Classification Number||C05 F 15/00|
|PCT International Application Number||N/A|
|PCT International Filing date|