Energy in Sericulture
sericulture industry is an extremely labour intensive cottage industry employing
about two million people in the private sector and twelve thousand five
hundred people in the public sector in Karnataka. The Government of Karnataka
operates seven filatures (wherein cocoons are reeled for obtaining silk
yarn) besides silk mills and several rearing farms (where silk worms are
reared). The area under mulberry cultivation is growing rapidly and is now
more than 265 lakh acres in Karnataka. Of these, 98% of mulberry gardens
are in the districts of Mysore, Mandya, Tumkur, Bangalore and Kolar.
The government silk filatures and silk factories derive their stream and hot water from coal-fired boilers of antiquated design. Although the component of the energy cost in the total cost of silk produced in such filatures is rather modest, the substitution of the present fossil energy resource (coat) by solar energy has several decided advantages like :
It is in this context that KSCST has initiated a project with the objectives of investigating the scope with the objectives of Investigating the scope of solar energy applications in sericulture and demonstrating them on a pilot basis. Specifically, use of solar energy for (1) supplying hot water for reeling and (2) cooling and/or heating of buildings for rearing silk worms and for storing cocoons are being explored.