Wednesday, March 31, 2010
An article on this topic also appeared in Article Ant and FavStocks.
Monday, March 29, 2010
Thursday, March 25, 2010
The skinny on indoor ozone Oils break it down, but the resulting byproducts may be worse than the starting lung irritant
If all goes according to plan, within a few years the company will turn E. coli into a "drop-in" renewable diesel fuel. The company already produces a diesel that meets the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards for road use in the U.S....Add one more factor in LS9's favor: one of its founders is Berkeley Lab's Chris Somerville and one of the major scientific figures in biofuel. He's also close to Energy Secretary Steve Chu and Steve Koonin, the head scientist at the DOE. The three were behind BP's $500 million donation to Berkeley and the University of Illinois to study biofuels. If the company's technology and facilities prove to be commercially scalable and the financing is in place -- both big ifs -- LS9 could be producing 10-12 million gallons of renewable diesel fuel by 2012. More>
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Amyris: Spun out of UC BERKELEY, Amyris has genetically modified microbes that eat sugar and secrete medicine that could be used to fight malaria. Tweak the genes a bit and it secretes fuel. It has a deal to start making ethanol in Brazil. LS9: The company's scientists have engineered a strain of e coli with a genome that can convert sugars into a fatty acid methyl ester which is chemically equivalent to California Clean diesel. It's a completely unnatural act but could lead to $45 a barrel biodiesel. It is working with Procter and Gamble on green chemicals and Chevron on fuel. Another highlight: one of the founders is noted Berkeley Lab scientist Chris Somerville. More>
Monday, March 22, 2010
The East Bay’s national laboratories are on the forefront of the quest for alternative renewable energy sources. Here's the latest from the labs.
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory: This lab's brand-new Carbon Cycle 2.0 initiative brings its cutting-edge research in areas such as biofuels, solar energy, and carbon capture under one umbrella—to help meet the nation’s ambitious goals to reduce carbon emissions.
Joint BioEnergy Institute: This Department of Energy–funded lab in Emeryville came out with an enormous clean-energy bombshell earlier this year, when researchers announced they had successfully engineered a microbe that could convert biomass (material as basic as grass, straw, or wood chips) into clean-burning biofuel. The discovery was hailed as a potential game changer in the efforts to produce affordable and renewable transportation fuels. More>
CL: Sure. In 2006, China launched a program to improve the energy efficiency of its top 1,000 energy-consuming enterprises. China’s economic ministry set the targets and then it turned to Lawrence Berkeley National Labs in California for assistance in designing aspects of program implementation, including the energy reporting system. So far, most of those companies seem on track to meet their targets. What’s significant here is that although both the Chinese and American labs are government affiliated, the heart of this partnership was an exchange between scientists and experts. More>
A story on this topic also appeared in nanotechwire.com.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Monday, March 15, 2010
While a theoretical maximum value is not yet known for the lipid content of microalgae, some researchers have estimated it to be as high as 85% of their dry cell weight. Higher lipid values in microalgae are, however, also associated with lower growth rates; therefore a biofuel application would not try to maximize lipid content but attempt to develop maximum productivity. “Making biofuels from algae is all about the economics,” says Nigel Quinn, a water resources engineer at the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. “In order to cultivate and convert algae into a biofuel, you need huge systems. Right now, algae biofuel can probably be made for a very non-competitive $9 or $10 per gallon.” More>
A story on this topic also appeared in the Contra Costa Times and earth2tech.