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Published on September 10, 2014

ITEC 2014 Bio-Elastomer Challenge, Paper 28: Cultivation and Processing of Taraxacum Kok-Saghyz in British Columbia, Canada

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Date Published September 10, 2014

Taraxacum kok-saghyz (TKS) is an important industrial rubber-producing plant that can be grown annually in Canada.  TKS has already been proven to be the promising commercial source of natural rubber and inulin. TKS was previously grown in Former Soviet Union, USA and Canada in 1930 and 1940s during rubber crisis.  In order to achieve high yields, it is necessary to study the growth progress of TKS in various climate zones of Canada. This preliminary study was focused on the cultivation activities of TKS in the climate zone of Lower Mainland, British Columbia in Canada.  Our agricultural activities included 1) germination, 2) cultivation and 3) seed production activities. These activities were carried out in both greenhouse and on raised beds.   The accumulation of rubber in TKS roots was the main indicator of success.  In addition, several processes for production of rubber from TKS were proposed: 1) Water-milling 2) Solvent-based extraction and 3) Dry-milling.  Particular attention will be paid to the main steps of solvent-based process considering economic and environmental factors.  The critical process stages such as rubber purification, recovery of solvent from rubber and de-solventizing of the meal will be emphasized.   Process parameters such as solubility of rubber, solvent loss, solvent/feed ratio, and rate-limiting stage will also be discussed. Production cost for solvent-based technology will be estimated. The impact of chemical solvents to the environment and human health will be considered.   Presented by Anvar Buranov, MSc PhD, Postdoc, inventor and Founder, NovaBiorubber Green Technologies Inc.