castor bean

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Related to castor beans: castor oil

castor bean,

bean produced by Ricinus communis, a plant of the spurgespurge
, common name for members of the Euphorbiaceae, a family of herbs, shrubs, and trees of greatly varied structure and almost cosmopolitan distribution, although most species are tropical. In the United States the family is most common in the Southeast.
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 family, widely cultivated as an ornamental. Moles die when they eat the roots. It has long been used as an ordealordeal,
ancient legal custom whereby an accused person was required to perform a test, the outcome of which decided the person's guilt or innocence. By an ordeal, appeal was made to divine authority to decide the guilt or innocence of one accused of a crime or to choose between
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 poison in parts of Africa. Ricin, the toxic protein found in the bean seeds, can be extracted and used as a poison or chemical weapon, but it is not as poisonous or as readily absorbed as other such weapons. Castor oilcastor oil,
yellowish oil obtained from the seed of the castor bean. The oil content of the seeds varies from about 20% to 50%. After the hulls are removed the seeds are cold-pressed.
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 is also extracted from the beans.

castor bean

[′kas·tər ‚bēn]
(botany)
The seed of the castor oil plant (Ricinus communis), a coarse, erect annual herb in the spurge family (Euphorbiaceae) of the order Geraniales.
References in periodicals archive ?
The market opportunity of castor beans as a sustainable and economically viable feedstock alternative for the growing biofuel market is substantial, and addresses one of the world's most significant challenges of fuel dependency.
OTCBB:BSRC) has introduced "a robust protective backing for solar cells derived from cotton and castor beans, which may possibly revolutionize the solar power industry as we know it today," according to a June 3, 2009 article on Green Energy News.
Classified intelligence reports have revealed that Al Qaeda's affiliate in Yemen has been making efforts to acquire large quantities of castor beans, which are required to produce ricin, a white, powdery toxin that is so deadly that just a speck can kill if it is inhaled or reaches the bloodstream.
The poisonous substance is found naturally in castor beans but can be converted into a lethal form that attacks the nervous system and can cause death within days.
OTCBB:BSRC) has been featured in several high-profile media reports following its recent announcement that materials derived from cotton and castor beans compose the company's proprietary BioBacksheet[TM], a protective covering, traditionally made from expensive petroleum-based film, used in the back of virtually all photovoltaic solar cells.
OTCBB:BSRC) surprised attendees at today's SPIE Symposium on Solar Applications and Energy in San Diego by revealing that materials derived from cotton and castor beans compose the company's proprietary BioBacksheet[TM], a protective covering, traditionally made from expensive petroleum-based film, used in the back of virtually all photovoltaic solar cells.
Blocked ricin is a derivative of the powerful toxin, ricin, which is found in castor beans.
BioSolar, whose breakthrough technology dramatically reduces the cost of solar cells by replacing traditional and expensive petroleum-based components with bio-based materials derived from renewable plant sources, shocked the industry last month when it announced at the SPIE Optics+Photonics conference that its technology was derived from cotton and castor beans.
OTCBB:BSRC) continues to garner media coverage following last month's announcement that materials derived from cotton and castor beans compose the company's proprietary BioBacksheet[TM], a protective covering, traditionally made from expensive petroleum-based film, used in the back of virtually all photovoltaic solar modules.
Obtained from castor beans, ricin is a protein toxin that enters cells and enzymatically inhibits protein synthesis leading to cell death soon after exposure.
BioSolar, whose breakthrough technology dramatically reduces the cost of these solar cells by replacing traditional and expensive petroleum-based components with bio-based materials derived from renewable plant sources, sent waves throughout the industry this summer when it announced at the SPIE Optics+Photonics conference that its technology was derived from cotton and castor beans.