Energy efficient jaggery maker (Ongoing)
PI: Prof. Milind V. Rane, Mechanical Engineering Department
Tata Fellow: Rahul Sanduja (2016 – 2018) and Rohit Kumar Maurya (2017-19)
Operations in the conventional jaggery-making process are energy and labour intensive. The available pool of skilled labour which can handle furnace firing and jaggery making using the open pan boiling, is fast depleting due to harsh working conditions. This often limits the operations of jaggery units. Improving the quality of jaggery and enabling organic jaggery production can improve revenue realization by farmers, by expanding the markets, including the hugely untapped export market. High bagasse consumption is an issue for conventional of jaggery units. Saving of bagasse can enable diverting the saved bagasse for composting on the farm which has proved to yield twice the productivity with organic farming. Development of small capacity energy efficient mobile jaggery makers can improve the economics of jaggery production, eliminate the transportation of sugarcane, improve the working conditions of the operators, improve the quality of jaggery, and reduce the space and cost required to setup a jaggery unit. This will help to increase the number of jaggery units, thereby increasing the number of people employed in this sector although the workers required per jaggery making unit will be reduced. Operators will be relieved from the harsh working conditions as the proposed vapour recompression system will eliminate bagasse firing altogether and recover potable water.