Sep 20, 2011

On-farm fuel seminar

STAPLES – The Agricultural and Energy Center at Central Lakes College, Staples, recently hosted an on-farm fuel production seminar for the Upper Midwest. Attendees came from as far as North Dakota. Aimed at a core audience of serious alternative fuel users, the four-hour seminar included a look at fuel conversion that is in practice and using various sources.Bob Schafer, center director, and Craig Hove, a lab assistant in the CLC Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technician program, led a discussion on the conversion of a Ford tractor to a vegetable oil-fueled Yanmar diesel. Ron Nelson, farm manager at CLC, presented oilseed harvesting combine operations as well as oilseed processing that includes cleaning, de-stoning, pressing, and filtering. He demonstrated the German KK-40 oilseed press to an interested audience of farmers, business men and entrepreneurs. The work at the Center continues to attract interest, Schafer said. “It takes time to prove out,” he said. “The program was well-received and will be followed up next year.”