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Cellulosic

— Science

New technique uses most abundant gas on Earth to help create bioethanol

By - February 3, 2015 2 Pictures
Zymomonas mobilis bacterium might be tricky to say, but this bioethanol-producing microbe could become a household name if Indiana University biologists have their way. The biologists claim have found a quicker, cheaper, cleaner way to increase bioethanol production in this microorganism by using the most abundant element in the Earth’s atmosphere: nitrogen gas (N2). By replacing chemical fertilizers with N2, production costs could be slashed and cellulose ethanol derived from wood pulp made much more economically viable – so much so that the researchers believe it may compete with corn ethanol and gasoline on price. Read More
— Science

New process could allow any plant to serve as a food source

By - April 19, 2013 1 Picture
Although the causes of world hunger are numerous, it certainly doesn’t help that factors such as arid conditions and limited land space make it difficult to grow food crops in certain places. If people in those areas could eat foods derived from plants that are hardy to the region, but that aren’t considered nutritious, it would go a long way towards addressing the problem. Well, that may soon be a reality, thanks to a newly-developed process that allows cellulose to be converted into starch. Read More
— Environment

Wood pulp extract stronger than carbon fiber or Kevlar

By - September 3, 2012 12 Pictures
The Forest Products Laboratory of the US Forest Service has opened a US$1.7 million pilot plant for the production of cellulose nanocrystals (CNC) from wood by-products materials such as wood chips and sawdust. Prepared properly, CNCs are stronger and stiffer than Kevlar or carbon fibers, so that putting CNC into composite materials results in high strength, low weight products. In addition, the cost of CNCs is less than ten percent of the cost of Kevlar fiber or carbon fiber. These qualities have attracted the interest of the military for use in lightweight armor and ballistic glass (CNCs are transparent), as well as companies in the automotive, aerospace, electronics, consumer products, and medical industries. Read More
— Environment

New lignin-solvent process harvests biofuel, paper and chemicals from plant material

By - August 2, 2012 1 Picture
In order to improve the sustainability credentials of biofuels, experts have been trying to figure out ways to produce them from non-food sources, such as cellulose – the material that makes up the cell walls of plants. Now, researchers from the Wisconsin Institute for Sustainable Technology (WIST) at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point have patented a process that they say paves the way for the creation of biofuels from cellulosic plant material. Read More
— Environment

Scientists claim that cars could run on old newspapers

By - August 26, 2011 1 Picture
Hopefully, your old newspapers don’t just end up in the landfill. In the future, however, they might not even be used to make more paper – instead they may be the feedstock for a biofuel-producing strain of bacteria. Named “TU-103,” the microorganism was recently discovered by a team of scientists at New Orleans’ Tulane University. It converts cellulose – such as that found in newspapers – into butanol, which can be substituted for gasoline. Read More
— Environment

Researchers use bacteria to produce potential gasoline replacement directly from cellulose

By - March 10, 2011 1 Picture
With the situation in Libya causing a spike in fuel prices worldwide there's some good biofuel-related news out of the U.S. Department of Energy's BioEnergy Science Center (BESC) that could help to reduce many countries' dependence on oil imports. For the first time, BESC researchers have succeeded in producing isobutanol directly from cellulosic plant matter using bacteria. Being a higher grade of alcohol than ethanol, isobutanol holds particular promise as a gasoline replacement as it can be burned in regular car engines with a heat value similar to gasoline. Read More
— Environment

Cleaner, cheaper fuel from orange peels and newspaper

By - February 18, 2010 1 Picture
While it may not quite be the Mr. Fusion energy reactor Doc Brown uses to convert household scraps into power for his time-traveling DeLorean, scientists have found a way to turn discarded fruit peels, newspapers and other waste products into cheap fuel to power the world’s vehicles. Its developer says the new approach is greener and less expensive than the current methods available to run vehicles on cleaner fuel and is part of his goal to relegate gasoline to a secondary fuel. Read More
— Environment

Trashing existing fuel sources could cut global emissions by 80%

By - September 30, 2009 1 Picture
If there’s one thing there seems to be an endless supply of, it's garbage. The idea of turning the trash that currently ends up in landfill into a fuel to combat the growing energy crisis and tackle carbon emissions isn’t new. Companies like Waste2tricity in the UK are already looking to convert waste from business and industry into clean electricity. Now scientists in Singapore and Switzerland have added credence to the idea, saying that replacing gasoline with biofuel derived from processed waste biomass could cut global emissions by 80%. Read More
— Automotive

Mazda's plans for a greener future

By - June 24, 2008 3 Pictures
June 25, 2008 Mazda has committed to cutting the fuel consumption of its vehicles by an average of 30% by 2015. The company is exploring a combination of fuel-cutting initiatives, including the development of lighter-weight technologies aimed at reducing vehicle weight by 100 kilograms from 2011, carbon neutral bioplastics, an Idle Stop system and an advanced version of the emissions-reducing Three Layer Wet Paint System fist introduced in 2005. Integral to the plan is the renewal of its entire powertrain lineup by 2015, with tests of its hydrogen hybrid system continuing ahead of plans for release in Japan in the coming fiscal year, as well as plans for a new gasoline rotary engine and new diesel engines. Read More

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