For a mere $10,000 any consumer can now make and pump their own ethanol at home.
A company called E-Fuel Corporation has introduced EFuel100 MicroFueler™ “the world’s first home ethanol system.” According to the company, the MicroFueler allows consumers to create ethanol with “sugar, yeast and water, and a standard household 110-220 AC power supply.” They claim that businesses, such as breweries, bars and restaurants can even use discarded alcohol beverages to create ethanol, for as little as $0.10 per gallon.
The home-brewed ethanol maker is the brain child of entrepreneur Tom Quinn and ethanol scientist Floyd Butterfield. They unveiled the machine at a press event Thursday in New York. Quinn says the device, which is about the size of a refrigerator, is so simple to use that anyone can do it. “You just open it like a washing machine and dump in your sugar, close the door and push one button,” he says. “A few days later, you’ve got ethanol.”
Quinn claims his invention will create a paradigm shift similar to the personal computer. “Just as the PC brought desktop computing to the home, E-Fuel will bring the filling station to the home.”
Besides the $10,000 to buy the Micro-Fueler, a consumer will also need a permit from the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms to make ethanol legally. In addition, the ethanol will have to be mixed with gasoline even for flex-fuel vehicles so the company recommends putting in a few gallons of regular gasoline and then topping off with the home-made brew.
The Micro-Fueler could also be eligible for federal tax credits that can bring the price down by about $3000 and the company is creating a distribution network for “ethanol-grade” sugar from Mexico that could cost as little as 3 cents a pound, compared to 20 cents for regular sugar. They claim the machine can make ethanol for as little as $1 a gallon and could pay for itself in less than two years.