Category: Research

Sandia lab makes lignin breakthrough using soil bacteria

Sandia lab makes lignin breakthrough using soil bacteria

September 28, 2016 |

In California, abundant, chock full of energy and bound so tightly that the only way to release its energy is through combustion — lignin has frustrated scientists for years. With the help of an unusual soil bacteria, researchers at Sandia National Laboratories believe they now know how to crack open lignin, a breakthrough that could […]

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Researchers play with photosynthesis to keep it from running out of control

Researchers play with photosynthesis to keep it from running out of control

September 27, 2016 |

In France, through photosynthesis, solar energy is converted into biological energy. It is often thought that photosynthesis becomes stronger as light becomes stronger, but actually photosynthesis may run out of control if subjected to an overabundance of light, causing reactive oxygen species which break the photosynthetic apparatus. To avoid this, when exposed to intense light […]

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University of Tennessee and ORNL using supercomputers to better produce biofuels

University of Tennessee and ORNL using supercomputers to better produce biofuels

September 26, 2016 |

In Tennessee, A UT-ORNL is using supercomputing to figure out ways to ease the path of turning vegetation into biofuel. A huge barrier in converting plant polymers to biofuel lies in removing other biomass polymers that subvert this chemical process. To overcome this hurdle, large-scale computational simulations are picking apart lignin, one of those inhibiting polymers, and […]

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Popeye was right: there’s super energy in that spinach

Popeye was right: there’s super energy in that spinach

September 25, 2016 |

Researchers from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology came up with what could pose as one of the most interesting discoveries from plants. The researchers came up with a bio-photo-electro-chemical (BPEC) cell that can produce hydrogen, oxygen and more importantly electricity from water using sunlight with the basis of the entire cell being a simple membrane […]

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Breakthrough in salt-tolerant plant development

Breakthrough in salt-tolerant plant development

September 25, 2016 |

Plant development research has seen some tremendous contribution from researchers with discoveries that always enhance plant growth and development. It is in this same vein that researchers from University of Adelaide (from the ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology in collaboration with the School of Medicine) made a breakthrough in findings into salt […]

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European ethanol’s greenhouse gas savings increase 8.5% in 2015: new report

European ethanol’s greenhouse gas savings increase 8.5% in 2015: new report

September 25, 2016 |

In the EU, ethanol’s direct greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) savings compared to fossil fuel have increased from 59% in 2014 to 64% in 2015, an increase of 8.5% against the 2014 figure, according to new industry statistics published by the European renewable ethanol association ePURE. The European renewable ethanol industry – Annual statistics report 2016*, […]

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New noncatalytic process converts CO2 into fuels like ethanol

New noncatalytic process converts CO2 into fuels like ethanol

September 22, 2016 |

In a new process for the economical conversion of carbon dioxide into fuels such as ethanol has been developed. The proprietary noncatalytic process combines CO2 with a carbonaceous feedstock and water in the form of steam at temperatures between 1,600 to 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit and low pressure, near atmospheric, in a gasifier to produce a […]

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Australian researchers find eucalyptus-based fuel would save more emissions for aviation biofuel

Australian researchers find eucalyptus-based fuel would save more emissions for aviation biofuel

September 21, 2016 |

In Australia, researchers from the Australian National University said in a new study eucalyptus-based fuel would initially be more expensive than fossil fuels to make on a mass scale, but would produce significantly less net carbon emissions. “If we could plant 20 million hectares of eucalyptus species worldwide, which is currently the same amount that […]

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University of Texas researchers produce alcohol fuels using organic semiconductor

University of Texas researchers produce alcohol fuels using organic semiconductor

September 20, 2016 |

In Texas, chemists at The University of Texas at Arlington have been the first to demonstrate that an organic semiconductor polymer called polyaniline is a promising photocathode material for the conversion of carbon dioxide into alcohol fuels without the need for a co-catalyst. In this proof-of-concept study, the researchers provide insights into the unique behavior […]

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Sandia Labs releases Asia-Pacific study on water vulnerability around energy production including biofuels

Sandia Labs releases Asia-Pacific study on water vulnerability around energy production including biofuels

September 19, 2016 |

In New Mexico, A wide-ranging analysis of water vulnerability across the Pacific — including the U.S., China, Russia and Japan — has identified hundreds of locations where energy production depends upon scarce water supplies. The Sandia National Laboratories study, “Mapping Water Consumption for Energy Production Around the Pacific Rim,” was published in Environmental Research Letters. […]

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