The National Institute for Inter-disciplinary Science and Technology has a technology for extraction of quality coir fiber from coconut husk, using enzymes.
This method carries out separation of fibers from their matrices by enzymatic cleaving of cementing compounds with in situ microbial growth and enzyme production.
A big advantage of this process is that the enzymes convert all the organic pollutants into methane, which can be collected easily. This bioprocess not only converts all the organic pollutants emanated from the extraction process to methane, but also facilitates its recovery as an Energy Source.
Since the methane production is almost exclusively from the Up flow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket Method (UASB) methanogenic reactor and no significant quantity of methane is generated from the retting tanks, therefore the collection of methane is possible without expensive gas tight covering of the retting tanks.
This bioprocess can also be used for processing of natural fibres like jute, banana and pineapple leaf.
Investment required for a capacity of 16000 husk/dayis about Rs.1.4 crore; Production per day will be 1.5 tonnes of fiber a day and 800 cubic meters of methane. NIIST says that in a full year, you can produce 1.2 lakkh tonnes of fiber (from 15 lakh tonnes of husk) and 82,500,000 cubic meters of methane. Contact: Mr. C.K. Chandrakanth, Principal Scientist, NIIST, Thiruvananthapuram, email: email@example.com; Mobile: +91 9061082354