“Forever Young” Switchgrass for Cellulosic Ethanol

John Davis

Scientists at the USDA might have found a way to keep switchgrass forever young and better for cellulosic ethanol. Agricultural Research Service (ARS) geneticist Sarah Hake, working with University of California-Berkeley plant geneticist George Chuck, found that taking a gene from corn called corngrass and inserting it into switchgrass keeps the grass always in a juvenile form that doesn’t flower, …

biomass, Cellulosic, corn, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Research, Science, USDA

Science Magazine Spotlights Seaweed to Biofuel Technology

Cindy Zimmerman

The cover story in the latest issue of Science Magazine showcases a California-based company’s technology that converts seaweed to biofuel. The research article details breakthrough technology developed by scientists with Bio Architecture Lab (BAL) using a microbe to extract the sugars in macroalgae that could further the use of seaweed as a feedstock for advanced biofuels and renewable chemical production. …

biofuels, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Research, Science

Will Biofuels Cause Water Apartheid?

Joanna Schroeder

Biofuels has been compared with fossil fuels, blamed for worldwide starvation, linked to CO2 increases and decreases, and born the brunt of scrutiny for rainforest destruction (aka land use). However, until now, biofuels have yet to receive a real beating on water use. Well, that day may be on the horizon with the release of the new Rice University study, “The …

biofuels, corn, Science, water

National Science Board Calls for More Green Energy

John Davis

A 25-member panel of researchers that advises the President and Congress on science and engineering issues is calling for more development of sustainable and clean energy sources to transition the country away from fossil fuels. The National Science Board has released a draft report entitled “Building a Sustainable Energy Future” for public review and comment: The NSB recommends that the …

Government, Science

“E-logo” a Hit with Kids

Laura McNamara

The green ethanol flags were a hit with the crowd at the 2008 IPL Festival Parade, especially with the kids. Spectators could spot “e” flags waving at Monument Circle and along the parade route. Some kids were using the flags as drumsticks, beating in time to the college and high school bands that marched past. Well, keeping time in their …

Audio, Energy, FEW, Fill Up Feel Good, Lauren Ciemniak, Miscellaneous, RFA, Science

Evidence that Ethanol Works

Laura McNamara

The ethanol industry in Brazil has been developing some major traction. Marcos Jank, President of UNICA, says the demand for ethanol in Brazil is now matching that of the demand for gasoline. He says ethanol is gaining ground and Brazil “won’t move back to gas.” Marcos was one of seven speakers at today’s Ethanol Summit held at the Indianapolis Motor …

Audio, Biodiesel, Car Makers, corn, Distillers Grains, E85, Energy, Environment, EPIC, Ethanol, Facilities, Farming, Flex Fuel Vehicles, Food prices, Indy Racing, News, Production, Racing, Research, Science

Student Wins Honor for Solar Cell Project

John Davis

An Oregon teenager has been honored for his work on making solar cells more efficiently. Brian McCarthy of Liberty High School from Hillsboro, Oregon placed third and won a $50,000 scholarship in the 2008 Intel Science Talent Search: In his research, Brian McCarthy, 18, from Hillsboro, Oregon, investigated the viability of plastic solar cells as a new option in solar …

Science, Solar

Youth to Take Up Shell Fueling the Future Challenge

Laura McNamara

The future of energy and fuel isn´t just in the hands of Congress. This spring, the 2008 Shell Eco-Marathon Americas will give today´s youth the chance to develop their own technologies for the transportation of tomorrow. 50 student teams from North and South America? Check. Young engineers bringing innovative thinking to the future of transportation? Check. Prototype vehicles that travel …

Energy, Production, Promotion, Racing, Science

Biofuels Research at Arizona State

Laura McNamara

The Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University is launching a Renewable Biofuel Research Initiative. Science Foundation Arizona and energy company BP are funding the initiative meant to propel the development of a renewable source of biofuel. The research effort focuses on using a specially optimized photosynthetic bacterium to produce biodiesel, a sustainable high-energy fuel that can be used in conventional …

Biodiesel, E85, Energy, Ethanol, News, Research, Science