Researchers from UMass Lowell received a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). The team is involved in the development of renewable options for fuel additives from sawdust. DOE’ Co-Optima initiative is the parent of this project. Co-Optima works on engine and fuel innovations to maximize performance.
Hunter Mack leads the research. He says that the additives are obtained from sustainable materials. He hopes that this will influence consumers to move away from traditional fuel alternatives. Mack’s goal is to improve vehicle efficiency, while reducing emissions. The study also intends to recognize novel, sustainable fuel substitutes.
Additive Blended Fuel to Improve Automobile Efficiency
The fuel additive is to be combined with conventional fuel. This will cut down the volume of the traditional fuel used, and help reduce carbon footprint. This blend of biofuel additive and fuel will enhance the performance of the engine to some degree.
A key ingredient of this biofuel additive is sawdust. The leftover biomass from sawmills and forest industry operations can be converted instead of being disposed.
There is apparently a substantial amount of biomass present to make the technique cost-efficient and viable. In the coming years, wood scrap from construction industries is likely to be used in making fuel additives. However, it is not being currently used as wood scrap consists of trace amounts of chemicals.
The $1 million dollar grant is sure to open new avenues for further research in the field.