Imperial College London researchers have engineered the harmless gut bacteria E.coli to generate the first renewable bio-propane fuel. The Brits development is a step towards commercial production of biologically produced fuel that could one day provide an alternative to fossil fuels. Propane is an attractive source of fuel because it burns cleanly, is easy to [...]

A study by researchers from Mississippi State University, the U.S. Geological Survey, and other institutions shows methane plumes in the water column between Cape Hatteras, North Carolina and Georges Bank, Massachusetts. The study shows natural methane leakage from the seafloor is far more widespread on the U.S. Atlantic margin than previously thought. At least 570 [...]

Researchers at the University of Twente have developed a simple new catalyst that improves the quality of bio oil. The bio oil they have in mind comes from wood chips or plant residues, which seldom has the same quality and energy content as fossil sourced crude oil. The new catalyst upgrades the bio oil closer [...]

Janet Westpheling at the University of Georgia (UG) has engineered microbes allowing the direct conversion of switchgrass to ethanol. Her study paper was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, documenting the direct conversion of biomass to ethanol without a pre-treatment, using the engineered bacterium Caldicellulosiruptor bescii. Hopes for affordable transportation fuels [...]

New catalysts are coming to remove oxygenated compounds from bio-derived oils. Biofuels produced from waste agricultural or forestry material are particularly desirable because they avoid diverting resources from the production of food crops. But, oils produced by high-temperature treatment of these waste materials contain a large amount of oxygenated compounds that result in undesirable properties [...]

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