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Jatropha oil can be extracted from the seeds in three ways:

  • Mechanically
  • Chemically
  • Enzymatically
The following illustration describes the oil extraction process from Jatropha seeds

Below are the most common methods for oil extraction from Jatropha seeds: 

The oil press method is used to extract the oil using simple mechanical devices. It is also done manually. The most commonly used oil press method is the Bielenberg Ram press method.

Bielenberg Ram press method is a simple traditional method that uses simple devices to extract the oils. With the help of this method, 3 liters of oil can be obtained from12 kg of seeds.

Oil Expellers

The oil Expeller method is also used for Jatropha oil extraction. The most commonly used process is the Sayari oil expeller method. This method is also called as Sundhara oil expeller. Komet oil expellers are also used.

These sayari oil expellers were developed in Nepal and are diesel operated. Now it is designed in Tanzania and Zimbabwe mainly for the production of Jatropha oil. Heavy oil expellers are made of heavy cast iron, and the light ones are made up of iron sheets. Electricity driven models are also available.

Komet oil expeller is a single oil expeller machine that is used to extract the Jatropha oil as well for the preparation of the oil cakes.

Traditional Methods

Traditional methods are used in the rural and developing areas for extracting the oils. Traditional methods are simple, and the oil is extracted by hand using simple equipment.

Hot oil extraction

The process of extracting the oil at high pressure is known as the hot oil extraction method. Since Jatropha oil can regulate the operating temperature, it is obtained using the hot oil extraction method.

Compared to the cold oil extraction method, it is easy to extract the oil from hot oil extraction since the oil flows more quickly due to higher viscosity. And the press cake that remains after extraction has less oil content, which might be 3 to 7 % approximately. These two reasons make the oil press method very interesting.

During the oil extraction method, many stuffing of seeds converts them into gum-like substances and some non-organic elements. These are unwanted products, and they have to be refined.

Modern Concepts

More modern methods allow extracting even higher oil quantities from Jatropha seeds. In these advanced concepts, chemical techniques like aqueous enzymatic treatments are applied. In turn, the yield averages 10-20% above traditional proceedings.

(edited 2-Dec-2019)