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Univ. Illinois Awarded $10.6Mn for Biodiesel Feedstock R&D (Funding)
US DOE,University of Illinois
Date: 2018-02-26
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) reports it has awarded $10.6 million over five-years in grant funding to the University of Illinois to transform two of the most productive crops in America into sustainable sources of biodiesel and biojet fuel.

The new research project Renewable Oil Generated with Ultra-productive Energycane (ROGUE) will engineer energycane, a bioenergy crop derived from sugarcane, and Miscanthus to produce the oil for the production of biodiesel and biojet fuel. Their work is guided by computer models, which project that these crops can achieve 20 pct oil content in the plant -- a dramatic increase from natural levels of less than a tenth of one percent.

Previous work, funded by the DOE Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), achieved 8 pct oil accumulation, and now ROGUE will further increase oil production and target oil accumulation in the stem where it can be accessed more easily with ROGUE's patented extraction technologies.

ROGUE will also improve the efficiency that these crops can turn the sun's energy into plant energy to fuel their biological oil production. Improving these crops' photosynthetic efficiency will ensure that the production of energy-dense oil will not lower yields or suppress plant defenses.

ROGUE is a collaboration amongst researchers from Illinois as well as Brookhaven National Lab, University of Florida, and Mississippi State University, with support from the DOE Office of Science (Office of Biological and Environmental Research). (Source: US DOE, University of Illinois, Feb., 2018)Contact: Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Stephen Long, ROGUE Director, (217) 244-2999, www.igb.illinois.edu

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel Feedstock,  US DOE,  Energycane,  Miscanthus ,  University of Illinois,  


Biofuels Feedstock Study Supports Billion-tpy Estimate (R&D)
North Central Regional Sun Grant Center
Date: 2018-01-24
Can farmers produce at least 1 billion tons of biomass per year that can be used as biofuels feedstock? That’s the question that researchers are trying to answer, according to South Dakota State University North Central Regional Sun Grant Center Director Vance Owens. The goal is to replace 30 percent of the petroleum consumed in the United States with biofuels.

Analysis of up to seven years of production data suggests an estimated billon-tpy could be available annually by 2030.

Field trial results and yield projections for herbaceous crops, including switchgrass, energycane, mixed perennial grasses on Conservation Reserve Program land, giant miscanthus and sorghum, as well as the woody feedstocks poplar and shrub willow, are available online in the January issue of GCB Bioenergy.

The raw data from the field trials will be available for public use and can be accessed at Knowledge Discovery Framework at the U.S. DOE website. Among the herbaceous energy crops, field-scale trials using traditional agricultural equipment were conducted for switchgrass and mixed perennial grasses suitable for use on CRP land, while smaller individual plots were utilized for energycane and giant miscanthus due to a lack of vegetative planting materials for these species.

South Dakota State University was the lead institution for the more than $20 million project which was funded by the U.S. DOE Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) and involved researchers from the U.S. DOE and USDA, 35 land-grant universities, Heidelberg University, INL, ORNL, ANL and several industry partners.

Report details are HERE (Source: South Dakota State University, Jan., 2018) Contact: South Dakota State Univ. North Central Regional Sun Grant Center, Vance Owens, Dir., (605) 688-5476, www.sdstate.edu/north-central-regional-sun-grant-center

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel Feedstock,  

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