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Page added on April 1, 2017

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Will grass become the new gasoline?

Alternative Energy

Researchers at Ghent University (Belgium, Europe) have developed a process that turns grass into biofuel.

In the quest of more sustainable fuel types, scientists at Ghent University have developed a way to turn grass into biofuel. Will we soon drive on ‘grassoline’?

“Until now, grass has mainly served as feed for animals. But apart from that, grass can also be used as biofuel. Due to its vast abundance, grass is the perfect source of energy,” scientist Way Cern Khor tells us. During his PhD research at Ghent University, Belgium, he investigated methods that can disintegrate and treat grass until it can be used as a fuel.

How it works

To improve its biodegradability, the grass is pretreated at first. Then bacteria are added. They convert the sugars in the grass into lactic acid and its derivatives.

This lactic acid can serve as an intermediate chemical to produce other compounds such as biodegradable plastics (PLA) or fuels.

The lactic acid then was converted into caproic acid, which was further converted into decane. And that’s where the process ends: decane can be used in aviation fuel. [SP1]

Work in progress

Although it might sound revolutionary, there’s still a lot to do before this becomes reality. Right now the amount of biofuel that can be made from grass is still limited to a few drops. The current process is very expensive, and engines should be adapted to this new kind of fuel.

“If we can keep working on optimizing this process in cooperation with the business world, we can come down on the price. And maybe in a few years we can all fly on grass!,” Khor concludes.

Science Daily



55 Comments on "Will grass become the new gasoline?"

  1. Midnight Oil on Sat, 1st Apr 2017 12:28 pm 

    I like the kind you can puff.
    Another BS hopium dream.
    You got to be high to write this stuff up.

  2. BobInget on Sat, 1st Apr 2017 12:35 pm 

    Anyone who has grown, cut, raked and baled, bucked,
    transported, stacked, fed out hay will be happy to explain how many steps it takes to grow grass for feed.

    Being a kind person, i’ll let this article pass as an April Fools joke.

    Although, someday, I’m sure, solar powered robots will enable the promise of cheap hay for a person’s wagon
    or saddle horse and milk cows.

    Why not just skip steps and harness the sun?

  3. Ghung on Sat, 1st Apr 2017 2:05 pm 

    April fools, or just another scheme to move resources around using fossil fuels?

  4. Nony on Sat, 1st Apr 2017 2:16 pm 

    yawn. been hearing the biofuel wonder tale since the 70s. wake me when there is a real breakthrough.

  5. Sissyfuss on Sat, 1st Apr 2017 3:59 pm 

    And Carl Spackler says it’ll stone the bejeezus out of you but don’t toke and drive.

  6. DerHundistlos on Sat, 1st Apr 2017 4:15 pm 

    @ Davy

    In another post that is now archived, you criticized me for flying to Colombia to save the planet. Well, I have news for you.

    Purchasing habitat in Colombia is not accomplished by telephone. It’s a particularly complicated process in developing countries. I travel to Colombia to buy land for permanent wildlife reserve sanctuaries as the only means for saving species at risk of extinction. These projects also produce important benefits for the local people. Typically, we have an agreement that enables local citizens to obtain clean water from the reserve sites at no cost. Forest guards are hired locally. Ecotourism generates good income for local business owners.

    The thousands of hectares I have purchased and saved in perpetuity offset the carbon used for my trips many thousands of times over. Or do you have another workable suggestion?

  7. dooma on Sat, 1st Apr 2017 4:38 pm 

    Gas Grass or Arse, no car is propelled for free.

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  9. Cloggie on Sun, 2nd Apr 2017 5:41 am 

    This grass thingy is too early to tell.

    But there are always those who keep insisting that “renewable energy is an extensions of fossil fuel”. You can always silence them by showing that you can make a living of growing sun flowers and turn them into bio-diesel:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aOzWgyB1FSk

    Here is an example of an Austrian town that is completely energy-autark and gets a lot of fuel from biomass:

    https://deepresource.wordpress.com/2013/10/16/gussing-austria-fossil-fuel-free/

  10. BobInget on Sun, 2nd Apr 2017 11:53 am 

    Scale, Cloggie. It’s all about scale.

    Lots of Trump voters use biomass digesters for heating, even power generation. They are able to do so because of chicken or pig manure in excess.
    Some might even call it bullshit.

  11. Cloggie on Sun, 2nd Apr 2017 12:15 pm 

    Scale, Cloggie. It’s all about scale.

    What the town of Guessing in Austria does can be done by almost any small town in the West, especially in America that has more space than Europe. There you have you scale.

    Lots of Trump voters use biomass digesters for heating, even power generation.

    The more you tell me about Trump voters, the more I begin to like them.

  12. GregT on Sun, 2nd Apr 2017 1:09 pm 

    ” You can always silence them by showing that you can make a living of growing sun flowers and turn them into bio-diesel:”

    That would be extremely difficult to do without any inputs from fossil fuels, and also completely pointless. Without the machinery to burn that biodiesel in, there would be no need for it. IOW, an extension of fossil fuels based industrial agriculture.

  13. JuanP on Sun, 2nd Apr 2017 4:10 pm 

    ““If we can keep working on optimizing this process in cooperation with the business world, we can come down on the price. And maybe in a few years we can all fly on grass!,” Khor concludes.”
    I flew on grass for years when I was younger and I think this guy is doing the same. Grass can be useful, though. Some herbivores will eat it and then you get steaks from them! You can also compost it or use it as mulch if mixed with other stuff. Wild grasses are OK but lawns are not. Lawns are an incredible waste of resources.

  14. JuanP on Sun, 2nd Apr 2017 4:16 pm 

    Derhund,
    I congratulate you on saving ecosystems. I wish we had more people like you. I hope you do realize, though, that every thing we do is not going to prevent what is coming and sometimes our actions can have unforeseen detrimental effects. Every time we save a life or an ecosystem we are supporting the existing systems that are damaging the biosphere. I think an early crash would have less severe consequences than a later one so every action that keeps this shit going for longer is basically counterproductive. You must keep trying, though, because that is all we can do.

  15. Cloggie on Sun, 2nd Apr 2017 5:37 pm 

    That would be extremely difficult to do without any inputs from fossil fuels, and also completely pointless.

    Bio diesel would be that fossil fuel input.

  16. Soylent Green on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 4:02 am 

    And what would the fossil fuel input of that bio diesel be?

    Your stupidity makes me feel ashamed to be a fellow dutchman.

  17. Cloggie on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 4:55 am 

    And what would the fossil fuel input of that bio diesel be?

    ???

    There doesn’t need to be a fossil fuel input for bio-diesel, kaaskop. They are completely interchangeable.

    But again, there is no need for bio-diesel other than in niches, like huge agricultural machines. But even they will eventually run on renewable electricity, once battery technology will have sufficiently evolved. Once you are able to store 10 kWh in a single kilogram, you can even fly on batteries (we are admittedly far away from that and flying should not be a priority, just saying).

  18. Davy on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 5:36 am 

    Cloggie, by the time things get bad enough biodiesel will be a very small niche fuel. It will not be made industrially for a modern economy. Your renewable world will likewise fall apart quickly from entropic decay. The best all this Euro alternative investment is going to do is extend the industrial decline. You live in a techno fantasy that gets more desperate and delusional by the day.

  19. Cloggie on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 6:10 am 

    Your renewable world will likewise fall apart quickly from entropic decay

    “Entropic decay”, never heard about that one before.

    http://duelyst.gamepedia.com/File:Entropic_Decay.png

    Apparently it is a computer game.

    But why would oil installations not be subjected to this mysterious “entropic decay” and wind turbines do?

    Oldest Dutch windmill from 1441 or older, older than America and still doing fine:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GuT5vNljXVk

    Won’t be different with modern wind turbines, it is just a matter of maintenance. Steel wind towers can survive several centuries, just like the Eiffel Tower.

  20. Davy on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 6:39 am 

    Clog, entropic decay is what happens to civilizations if they do not reinvest. Complex civilizations face tremendous investment requirements. This is something you are oblivious to. You always gloss right over the economic aspects of your energy golden age. Your Europe is going broke and you fiddle while Rome burns by indicating everything is fine when it isn’t fine. Of all the regional powers Europe is most at risk from an unworkable union and an attached vulnerable currency. This will stop your golden age of renewables in its tracks. Then the real Euro attitudes will come out with wars and inquisitions.

  21. Cloggie on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 7:28 am 

    Why should we stop investing? I never talked about a “golden age”, you are putting words in my mouth. “Tremendous investment requirements”? We are merely talking about replacing fossil fuel power stations, that needs to be replaced after 3-5 decades anyway with renewable capacity. There is not that much extra investment required.

    Your Europe is going broke and you fiddle while Rome burns by indicating everything is fine when it isn’t fine.

    Europe is not going broke. Italians banks perhaps. So what, bail-ins coming to the rescue. Greece brought itself into trouble by going on a lending spree after it lied itself into the euro by cooking the books, aided by Goldman-Sachs.

    Of all the regional powers Europe is most at risk from an unworkable union and an attached vulnerable currency.

    What does that mean, “vulnerable currency”? The euro simply exists and the Euro is not subjected to international campaigns to get it ignored, much in contrast to the dollar. The tragedy with America is that it set itself unattainable goals (conquering the entire world). As a consequence it has the entire world mobilized against itself. At least Trump understood that and tried to buddy up with Russia, but the deep state and MSM won’t let him, because they want a) to keep Europe and Russia separate and b) they still see Russia as the easiest target for the days after Trump. The calculation is that once Washington has achieved regime-change in Moscow and with Brussels still in their pocket, they can finally attempt to bring China on its knees and force it to be integrated in a Washington run super structure (NWO).

  22. Davy on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 7:38 am 

    Clog, this is a systematic thing that one you get behind you don’t recover from.

    Clog explain all that Euro debt? Do you even comprehend what that debt represents? Do you even understand what the southern Euro bank danger is?

    Your a bright guy but not with finance. Your great with renewable tech and revised history but finance you are lost.

  23. Davy on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 7:46 am 

    Clog, not trying to pick on you but makatiland BS doesn’t fly with me. Talking up Euroland and down my country just doesn’t fly on many levels. You have this narrative going that is a projection of a yet realized future that does not reflect reality. You revise the past to embellish this narrative. It’s called propaganda and agenda. When things sound too good to be true they are.

  24. Cloggie on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 7:50 am 

    http://tinyurl.com/n5k6oyw

    The US is in the same league with Italy and Greece. Debt in Europa is indeed high, but not as high as in the US (or Japan). Furthermore is the debt backed by a strong economy.

  25. Davy on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 8:06 am 

    Clog, there you go with your links without understanding. The Euro is a hollow currency with dangerous conditions for its future. The US has a reserve currency the Euro is not. Much of the US debt is internal and what is not represents unstable trade arrangements of which your Europe is very exposed to. Protectionism will hammer Northern Europe bad. Your growth is lower than US. Unemployment is dangerously high in Europe. Your demographics are horrible. Your population densities too high. Your natural resource base depleted. Nothing to crow about in Europe. Europe is likely the first shoe to drop in the collapse process becuase of its unworkable union and social and political decay.

    I am not talking up the US which is a mess but please bragging about a loser like Europe don’t fly with me. Why don’t you and makati start a blog.

  26. Soylent Green on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 11:11 am 

    I wanted to reply to cloggie, but Davy did all the hard work for me, thanks!

    And you are absolutely right about Europe. The Netherlands supposedly has one of the strongest economies of Europe, but as a business owner myself I can clearly see more and more of the companies I work for are struggling more with each passing year

  27. DerHundistlos on Mon, 3rd Apr 2017 2:10 pm 

    @ JuanP

    Thank you for your kind words.

    My next project is to establish a model permaculture farm that the farmers can emulate. The problem is locating the expertise. From what little I know, permaculture is not something I can learn from a three day seminar. Do you have any ideas?

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  31. Davy on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 7:34 am 

    Fotboll, there is something special about our comradery here in the recognition of doom. In a world of denial and functional insanity it is one of the few places we can find mental sanity.

  32. onlooker on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 7:49 am 

    Yes Fot, I agree with Davy. This is a place where we talk about reality not fantasies. Despite some differences and arguments, we have more in common with each other than with the general populace

  33. Cloggie on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 8:32 am 

    Davy and onlooker, you are talking to a bot.lol Ah well, it is still better than talking to yourself, I guess.

    A few historic quotes from our “Icelandic guest”:

    Hmm it looks like your blog ate my irst comment (it was super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I had written and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I as well am an aspiring blog writer but I’m still new to everything.
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  34. onlooker on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 8:52 am 

    Since you are not a bot, Clog thus is for you
    Pending Bankruptcy Of Largest Solar Company Puts Alternative Energy Industry Into Full Meltdown Mode

    https://www.technocracy.news/index.php/2016/04/15/pending-bankruptcy-largest-solar-company-puts-alternative-energy-industry-full-meltdown-mode/

  35. Davy on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 9:24 am 

    Who cares clog, what I said applies to many of us here. I enjoy your contributions other than your Makati-isms.

  36. Cloggie on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 9:42 am 

    Since you are not a bot, Clog thus is for you Pending Bankruptcy Of Largest Solar Company Puts Alternative Energy Industry Into Full Meltdown Mode

    That article/site you link to is clearly anti-renewable and pro-fossil, which is fine, that’s up to them. But their conclusion is wrong.

    What is your point, onlooker? SunEdison is a US company. It merely shows that it is very difficult for a western production company to compete on global markets with cheap labor from China. It absolutely does not prove that solar is on the way out as you seem to imply and as you can verify for yourself in a single glance:

    https://cleantechnica.com/2016/08/17/10-solar-energy-facts-charts-everyone-know/

    Remedy?

    Import tariffs on Chinese products or force Chinese to increase wages or concentrate on high end complicated products (#EuropeanWay)

  37. Davy on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 10:30 am 

    Clog, the Euro way, high subsidies and systematically restricted markets. I get ya now.

  38. onlooker on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 10:52 am 

    Yeah, Clog and short circuit the world Economy. Lets see last time that happened Europe did not fare too well. For better or worse the major Economies are tied together. You know like Marriage till death do you part

  39. Apneaman on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 11:05 am 

    hair clog, about that euro renaissance 2.0 …..

    Why is Europe losing the will to breed?

    Despite Europe’s wonderful heritage, the continent is losing faith in itself, and birth rates have collapsed

    http://www.irishtimes.com/news/science/why-is-europe-losing-the-will-to-breed-1.2644169

  40. Cloggie on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 11:48 am 

    SunEdison Solar went bankrupt. Renewable Energy part taken over by Canadian company.

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-03-07/brookfield-to-acquire-controlling-stake-in-terraform-power

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SunEdison

    The assets remain “in the family”, so to speak.
    The Kind is dead. Long live the King.

  41. Cloggie on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 11:54 am 

    Despite Europe’s wonderful heritage, the continent is losing faith in itself, and birth rates have collapsed

    Reason: feminism, hedonism, birth control, promotion of homosexuality, too much distraction (careers, travel), anti-male marriage legislation, environmental doomerism, etc., etc.

    But that’s OK, there are too many people in Europe anyway. Japan same story. The showdown will come anyway. And why don’t you worry about your Jews instead, Apneasnot? They face exactly the same predicament. Is there still a single Jew who is not a heaumeau?

  42. Boat on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 1:08 pm 

    Clog,

    You don’t need 8 kids to farm any more. I wish all the world would quit promoting more births with tax incentives. Why have tax breaks for marriage? Counter productive to sustainable populations.

  43. GregT on Fri, 21st Apr 2017 10:44 pm 

    Boat,

    “Counter productive to sustainable populations.”

    The two things that were the most responsible for unsustainable population numbers, were science and technology.

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