Bamboo Charcoal and Activated Carbon

Bamboo charcoal and active carbon are new products developed in recent years. Bamboo being of special microstructure possesses extreme absorbing and other special capacities after carbonization. Their uses in the areas of new technology are of importance.

Variety of Bamboo Charcoal: There are many kinds of bamboo charcoal. In line with their origin, bamboo charcoal can be divided into two parts: raw bamboo charcoal and charcoal stick of chips. Raw bamboo charcoal is made of small sized bamboo, old bamboo, and bamboo tops, roots, which are not fit for making other bamboo products. Charcoal stick of chips is made of residue from bamboo processing industries. In the process of making different kinds of industrialized products, there will be residue, which should be broken in chips, dried, and pressed into sticks before carbonization.

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Bamboo Based Industries in India

India has huge natural bamboo stocks that have been an integral part of Indian culture for many millennia. Bamboo in many ways is the mainstay of the rural Indian economy, sparking considerable social and ecological spin-offs. In the early part of the century, large tracts of bamboo occurred in many parts of the country but were treated by forestry sector (which was then cast in a production forestry mode) as a weed of little economic value and were used mostly by the rural communities for crafts, making implements and as housing material. It was the discovery of bamboo as a source of long-fibre by the Forest Research Institute in Dehradun that started the process of using bamboo in a variety of industrial applications, so far unexplored, with several paper mills and rayon mills being set up. But in the absence of a clear policy of husbanding of the resource there was rapid degradation and decimation of the resource in much of the country. Bamboo resources plummeted so alarmingly that at present the resource is limited to few pockets in the country. Two-thirds of the bamboo in the country is restricted to the North-Eastern Region (NER) while the remaining one-third is spread across the country.

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Bamboo as plantation crop for biomass

The Biomass Feedstock Development Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) recently released a publication entitled Bamboo: An Overlooked Biomass Resource? Bamboo is the common term for a group of woody grasses comprised of 1250 species. It is relatively fast growing and attains maturity within five years. The shortest species stands only four inches (10 cm) at maturity while the tallest reach 130 feet (40 m) with stem (culm) diameters of 12 inches (30 cm). Read the full post HERE

Bamboo in natural disaster mitigation

Bamboo can play a role in disasters and relief in the following ways:

1. Bamboo’s ability to withstand vibrations help in mitigating disasters. Buildings made of bamboo survive earthquakes while concrete structures collapse. Latin American houses built with bamboo have survived earthquakes.

 2. Bamboo’s soil binding properties helps in preventing land degradation, soil erosion and land slides. It preserves watersheds. Underground roots can spread over a 100 square metre area. When rains fail bamboo rhizomes increase soil moisture. This can help in drought proofing.

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