Não sei se é permitido postar esses textos grandes pra tradução. Se não for, me avise q eu removo. Caso traduzam, fico bastante grato.Money Doesn’t Grow on Trees, But Gasoline MightResearchers make breakthrough in creating gasoline from plant matter, with almost no carbon footprint
Researchers make breakthrough in creating gasoline from plant matter, with almost no carbon footprint April 7, 2008 National Science Foundation Researchers have made a breakthrough in the development of “green gasoline,” a liquid identical to standard gasoline yet created from sustainable biomass sources like switchgrass and poplar trees. Reporting in the cover article of the April 7, 2008 issue of Chemistry & Sustainability, Energy & Materials, chemical engineer and National Science Foundation (NSF) researcher George Huber of the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and his graduate students announced the first direct conversion of plant cellulose into gasoline components. Even though it may be 5 to 10 years before green gasoline arrives at the pump or finds its way into a jet airplane, these breakthroughs have bypassed significant difficulties to bringing green gasoline biofuels to market. “It is likely that the future consumer will not even know that they are putting biofuels into their car,” said Huber.
“Biofuels in the future will most likely be similar in chemical composition to gasoline and diesel fuel used today. The challenge for chemical engineers is to efficiently produce liquid fuels from biomass while fitting into the existing infrastructure today.” For their new approach, the UMass researchers rapidly heated cellulose in the presence of solid catalysts, materials that speed up reactions without sacrificing themselves in the process. They then rapidly cooled the products to create a liquid that contains many of the compounds found in gasoline. The entire process was completed in less than two minutes using relatively moderate amounts of heat.
“Green gasoline is an attractive alternative to bioethanol since it can be used in existing engines and does not incur the 30 percent gas mileage penalty of ethanol-based flex fuel,” said John Regalbuto, who directs the Catalysis and Biocatalysis Program at NSF
and supported this research.
“In theory it requires much less energy to make than ethanol, giving it a smaller carbon footprint and making it cheaper to produce,” Regalbuto said. “Making it from cellulose sources such as switchgrass or poplar trees grown as energy crops, or forest or agricultural residues such as wood chips or corn stover, solves the lifecycle greenhouse gas problem that has recently surfaced with corn ethanol and soy biodiesel.”
Beyond academic laboratories, both small businesses and petroleum refiners are pursuing green gasoline. Companies are designing ways to hybridize their existing refineries to enable petroleum products including fuels, textiles, and plastics to be made from either crude oil or biomass and the military community has shown strong interest in making jet fuel and diesel from the same sources.
“Huber’s new process for the direct conversion of cellulose to gasoline aromatics is at the leading edge of the new ‘Green Gasoline’ alternate energy paradigm that NSF, along with other federal agencies, is helping to promote,” states Regalbuto.http://www.nsf.gov/news/news_summ.jsp?cntn_id=111392