Camelina sativa & Honeybees

source: www.greenerpro.com/Camelina.html

A recent NPR article reports that the Air Force and Navy are looking at biofuels to reduce dependance on petroleum products. So far a 50% mixture of  jet fuel and camelina biofuel has been used to fly: a Boeing 747, a C-130, FA-18 Super Hornets and a F-22 Raptor.

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Reproduction of Camelina sativa:

(from http://www.issg.org/database/species/ecology.asp?si=1440&fr=1&sts=&lang=EN)

The propagule of reproduction of C. sativa is the seed. This species has an unspecialized mode of dispersal. It uses mixed mating as its system of breeding. The sex of this species is hermaphroditic. The fruit type is called a silicle (API, 2008). The seeds result from either self-pollination, or cross pollination by visiting insects.

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Camelina sativa is: (from http://www.greenerpro.com/Camelina.html)

… Camelina is an oil crop which can be grown on cold and marginal lands without the intensive use of petrochemicals like it is the case with canola. This means its cultivation is more sustainable and the purchase of land will be much cheaper. In Germany the crop showed good potential as a rotational crop in combination with wheat. It is suited for colder climates and little rainfall. Camelina was first cultivated in Northern Europe during the Bronze Age. Seeds from camelina were crushed and boiled to release oil for food, medicinal use and lamp oil.

Camelina produces soy quality meal and canola quality oil. Camelina meal could be used for special high omega feed for fish, poultry, beef and dairy cattle, hogs, goats and pets. Today camelina is produced in France, Argentina, Slovenia, Ukraine, China, Finland, Germany, Austria and the USA.

Camelina is relatively easy to grow and requires lower agricultural inputs compared to other crops. In Montana, USA they breed a new variety called MT5 with a better and higher oil content in the seeds. Another important issue of oil is the Fatty Acid Profile. This determines the cold flow properties when converted to biodiesel. Camelina methyl ester was tested in Austria and found out to be comparable with the rapeseed (canola) biodiesel… (see GreenerPro for more detail)

Additional Links

USDA ARS Researching Camelina as a Biofuel

Wikipedia

Sustainable Oils

 

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