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Beyond Fossil Fuels - Finding New Ways to Fill the Tank

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groovedaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 12:23 PM
Original message
Beyond Fossil Fuels - Finding New Ways to Fill the Tank
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. Most research on renewable energy has focused on replacing the electricity that now comes from burning coal and natural gas. But the spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the reliance on Middle East imports and the threat of global warming are reminders that oil is also a pressing worry. A lot of problems could be solved with a renewable replacement for oil-based gasoline and diesel in the fuel tank either a new liquid fuel or a much better battery.

Yet, success in this field is so hard to reliably predict that research has been limited, and even venture capitalists tread lightly. Now the federal government is plunging in, in what the energy secretary, Steven Chu, calls the hunt for miracles.

The work is part of the mission of the new Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy, which is intended to finance high-risk, high-reward projects. It can be compared to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, part of the Pentagon, which spread seed money for projects and incubated a variety of useful technologies, including the Internet.

The goal of this agency, whose budget is $400 million for two years, is to realize profound results such as tens of millions of motor vehicles that would run 300 miles a day on electricity from clean sources or on liquid fuels from trees and garbage.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/19/business/energy-envir...
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no_hypocrisy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 12:35 PM
Response to Original message
1. Heard on the radio news that scientists in Scotland have found a way of using
whiskey mash (byproduct of making distilled whiskey) to fuel vehicle engines.
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jdlh8894 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 12:54 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Been to the liquor store lately?
Edited on Thu Aug-19-10 01:01 PM by jdlh8894
Oh ,yeah. FYI. Mash is not a byproduct.It is what whiskey is made from.
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no_hypocrisy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 01:00 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. This was literally refuse, garbage that has been recycled.
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jdlh8894 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 01:08 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. Recycled? Into what? J4?Or water it down and sell it on the corner in 40,s
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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 11:08 PM
Response to Reply #3
10. A link would be helpful
And have the side benefit of shutting down the comments from the peanut gallery.

For the record, I'd be interested in seeing that. One question. When you burn used fryer oil in your vehicle the exhaust kinda smells like french fries. So, would this car leave a wake of boozy smell everywhere as it cruises down the road?

And, would the cops be more or less apt to stop you?
:rofl:
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Nihil Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-20-10 05:03 AM
Response to Reply #3
11. It was the pot ale (the waste product) not the mash (the active product) ...
... so you were both right in a way and wrong in a way ... :hi:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

(And ignore the photo - it's wrong!)

FWIW, I don't particularly like the idea of doing this as the pot ale
is already being used (mixed up to make cattle feed amongst others)
so you are not only robbing Peter to pay Paul but - yet again - doing so
for the sake of f*cking cars!

The solutions to motor vehicle fuel shortages are to improve the efficiency
(miles per gallon) of the engine, use smaller engines and cut back on the
number of miles driven (all of which are better solutions than bastardising
a working product cycle).

:banghead:
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Kolesar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 01:51 PM
Response to Reply #1
5. There are many "waste streams" that can be tapped
I heard that segment this morning , too
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GliderGuider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 02:15 PM
Response to Original message
6. I still think we will just keep driving till the oil is gone, then stop.
I still haven't seen any suggestions for fuel replacements that don't have scale problems, cost problems or their own set of knock-on issues or all three.


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zeaper Donating Member (97 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 03:27 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Dont forget Coal, the other fossil fuel
We can easily keep those Hummers a rolling!
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GliderGuider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 03:32 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Yew betcha!
:banghead: :puke:
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-19-10 08:20 PM
Response to Original message
9. Fuel from garbage yes, from trees hell no. Why not say from algae?
Sorry bur 'trees and garbage' irritated me, as if they were being equated.
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Nihil Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-20-10 05:08 AM
Response to Reply #9
12. Agreed.
> Sorry bur 'trees and garbage' irritated me, as if they were being equated.

Basically, it is "anything that will allow us to feed our pathetic addiction
to cars without mentioning the C word or any other 'infringement to our rights'".

:grr:


(*) = "conservation" in case you were wondering ... the other one still applies
to the "right to consume & waste" folks though! :evilgrin:
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-20-10 10:39 AM
Response to Reply #12
15. I am with you. The total ignorance of the opportunities in conservation is pathetic.
I use 'opportunities' to speak their lingo. :P
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BridgeTheGap Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-20-10 07:56 AM
Response to Reply #9
13. How about hemp for fuel? n.t
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-20-10 10:36 AM
Response to Reply #13
14. I think algae is better efficiency wise but why not? Especially on an individual basis,
You know what would be great, home grown fuel. If you could grow twice as much as you needed and sequester half, helping to reduce the carbon load in the atmosphere, without taking huge tracts of land to do it that would be great.

One thing this planet does not need is ethanol from industrial agriculture, grown on land taken from rainforests.
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BridgeTheGap Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-20-10 12:39 PM
Response to Reply #14
16. Hemp has many advantages over corn and other crops used for ethanol production. It is one of the
best plants at producing oxygen, a great rotational crop and requires no pesticides.
What I haven't seen is a realistic number on how much fuel can produced through an acre of hemp. That is a critical number to know to gage how worthwhile it is to pursue for the purpose of providing fuel. It should still be legal for its hundreds of other uses.
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-20-10 04:02 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. Agreed. Corn is the last thing we should be using (after trees @#$%!) nt
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poopfuel Donating Member (228 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-20-10 04:06 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. hey glitch and bridge the gap, head on over
to alcoholcanbeagas.com
Lots of different feedstocks. Use sustainable methods of farming. Make more food and fuel.

Enjoy the read!

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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-21-10 11:42 AM
Response to Reply #18
19. Thanks poopfuel! Poop is one of my favorite fuels, we will never run out of it. :) nt
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Kringle Donating Member (411 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-22-10 08:04 PM
Response to Reply #17
20. ezported corn is largely wasted
better to use it for any use in the US,
such as fuel
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