Thursday, June 26, 2008

A New Kind of Bio-Fuel

Has anyone else heard about this? Sounds fascinating and promising.

The key to the next generation of biofuels isn't growing in a field; it's mutating in a lab. By swapping natural genes in yeast and bacteria for synthetic ones, scientists have tricked the microbes into producing hydrocarbons—creating, in essence, billions of tiny refineries to turn simple sugars into environmentally friendly diesel, gasoline, jet fuel and biocrude.

We've been making a lot of things using micro-organisms for a long time," says Jim McMillan, biorefining process R&D manager at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). "The real breakthrough here, I think, is recognizing that you can get these microbial factories to produce these very high-energy fuel molecules, like hydrocarbons."


#Debi said...

I had heard of something like that. Cool, huh? Almost alchemic...

Alice C. Linsley said...

Now is the time to invest in sugar cane!