UT & Genera Harvest Poplar Trees for Biofuels

Joanna Schroeder

University of Tennessee AgResearch Center is harvesting its first batch of popular trees to be used as biomass to create biofuels. The 10-acre plot of hybrid poplars was planted about four years ago and now the 30-foot trees are expected to produce between 60-100 tons of woody biomass. The harvest is part of a five-year $15 million multi-disciplinary research and development …

advance biofuels, biomass, Cellulosic, Ethanol

Sumitomo Invests in Cosan Biomassa

Joanna Schroeder

Sumitomo Corporation has signed a contract to acquire up to 20 percent of Cosan Biomassa, a producer of sugarcane pellets for power generation. With an eye on Asia’s need to reduce fossil fuel use and meet goals as set forth in the Climate Treaty last December, the partnership between Sumitomo and Cosan will focus on increasing exports to Japan and …

bioenergy, biomass, Brazil

University of Illinois Identifies Ideal Bioenergy Crops

Joanna Schroeder

New research from the University of Illinois has identified what bioenergy crops are best for certain regions while minimizing effects on water quantity and quality. The study was based on replacing current vegetation with crops for ethanol production and looked at how each crop would impact water quantity and quality in soils. “We expect the outcome of this study to …

biomass, Ethanol, feedstocks, Research

Federal Activities Report on Bioeconomy Released

Joanna Schroeder

USDA has released a new report, “Federal Activities Report on the Bioeconomy.” According to Dr. Catherine Woteki, the report was developed to create awareness of federal agency activities that are helping to develop and support the bioeconomy. The “bioeconomy” is an emerging part of the U.S. economy, says Woteki, that utilizes renewable biological resources to produce fuels, power and biobased …

biochemicals, bioenergy, biofuels, biogas, biomass, biomaterials

U of Illinois Miscanthus Research Breakthrough

Joanna Schroeder

University of Illinois researchers have studied genetic markers of miscanthus to identify early developmental traits that will improve yield. According to the researchers, “this study begins to establish links between reproducible genetic markers and a number of key agronomic traits in Miscanthus sinensis.” The research paper was published in GCB Bioenergy, “Mapping the genome of Miscanthus sinensis for QTL associated …

advance biofuels, biomass, Research

Goat’s Guts Lead to Better Biofuels

Joanna Schroeder

New research finds that some day your gas tanks could be filled up by horses, sheep and goat’s guts. Researchers looked at how the anaerobic gut fungi, as compared to engineered fungi, were able to convert plant material into sugars that could be converted into advanced biofuels and other biobased materials. Fungi found in the guts of goats, horses and …

advance biofuels, biochemicals, biomass, biomaterials, enzymes, Research

DOC Partners With NEC to Increase Ethanol Exports

Joanna Schroeder

Despite low crude oil prices, 2015 was still a robust export year for the ethanol industry according to Kenneth Hyatt, deputy under secretary for International Trade with the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC). The DOC partnered with the Renewable Fuels Association, the host of the 21st Annual National Ethanol Conference (#RFANEC) where delegates from several countries were on hand to …

Audio, biofuels, biomass, Ethanol, Exports, National Ethanol Conference, RFA

Comet Biorefining to Build Biomass to Sugar Plant

Joanna Schroeder

TransAlta Energy Park located in Sarnia, Ontario will be the new home of a commercial scale biomass to sugar facility operated by Comet Biorefining. The facility is expected to be operational by 2018 and will produce 60 million pounds per year of dextrose sugar from locally sourced corn stover and wheat straw. Comet, using its proprietary patented process, coverts the …

biochemicals, biomass, biomaterials, bioplastics

New BIO-Yeast Could Improve Biofuels Production

Joanna Schroeder

Quinn Dickinson, research specialist at the University of Madison’s Wisconsin Energy Institute who also works with the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC), has helped to design a new strain of yeast that he believes holds great promise in improving the efficiency of making biofuel from biomass such as switchgrass. Dickinson’s goal is to solve a problem in the biomass …

advance biofuels, biochemicals, biomass, bioproducts, Research

DOE Announces Biomass to Biofuels Funding

Joanna Schroeder

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has announced up to $11.3 million in funding to develop flexible biomass to hydrocarbon biofuels conversion pathways. The goal is for these roads, per se, to be able to be easily modified to produce advanced biofuels and/or bioproducts, depending on market demand. Using a DOE example, one pathway could consist of a route to …

advance biofuels, biomass, biomaterials, bioproducts