Oil and water may not mix, but ethanol and water do.
According to this story from the Pratt (NE) Tribune, field tests were recently done in Nebraska on a valve that is bolted onto an existing engine that allows it to run on a mixture of ethanol and water.
The valve, designed by Ecosense Solutions of Missouri, can be attached to an internal combustion engine (it attaches to the top of the manifold) without drastically changing the basic engine. It was field tested on a stationary irrigation motor in Nebraska.
Bottom line was that with a mixture of 80 percent ethanol and 20 percent water, emissions were reduced by half and there was a cost savings of $2-3 per hour to operate the engine.
More testing is being done to fine tune the system, but the article says that irrigators in California are taking a close look at the valve because of emission laws that will take effect in 2007 and make it difficult for them to meet those standards using natural gas which is getting very expensive.
That’s the nutshell version – be sure to read the whole article for details.