There are several known recipes from plant materials to produce fuels similar to gasoline.  After all, what is petroleum? Is it not derived from plants buried millions of years ago? No one needs to play any mischief or cheat anybody, when there are procedures available in the literature! Mr. Pillai might have developed one such kind of concoction. I donít know what is Mr. Pillaiís recipe, but I can give you an example. Most of these procedures are not economically feasible at this time. The following example illustrates my point.

Soybean oil  when thoroughly mixed with lime and distilled would yield a liquid similar in properties to cracked petroleum. The yield is 70% by volume. In Giant Food Store the price of a gallon of Soybean oil is $ 6.00. I think it is easy to calculate how much would be a gallon of gasoline produced by using this method! Donít forget to add the cost of lime and distillation apparatus! In general, these alternative fuels are more expensive than the gasoline and other petroleum products. That is why there is no incentive for the development of any technology based on these expensive procedures. These recipes might come handy when we deplete completely all fossil fuels. I think alcohol, electricity and solar energy are reasonable alternatives at that time. I hope Mr. Pillai has come up with a recipe which would provide us with cheaper petroleum products. The news that the chief ministers of Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu promised Mr. Pillai financial help to set up an industry are welcome. I wish them good luck! Sreenivasarao Vepachedu, 10/06/96.
(This article was written when a controversy erupted over Mr. Pillai's claims that were later proven to be false)

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