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Messalina
30th January 2007, 03:29 PM
I'm interested to know if cellulosic ethanol is being researched or developed in Australia, or if there is an Australian supply chain that includes cellulosic ethanol? I've so far only managed to find listed companies overseas, in places such as Canada (Iogen Corporation of Ontario).

Messalina
30th January 2007, 03:49 PM
And sorry I've accidently posted this thread in the wrong section - it should be in ethanol...

Robert
30th January 2007, 04:35 PM
And sorry I've accidently posted this thread in the wrong section - it should be in ethanol...

There you go, I've moved it. :)

zigparacingtadpole
30th January 2007, 10:30 PM
I cant help you much on the research and development side of things but as for a chain, in SA SAFF currently markets 'Bio Unleaded 95' and 'Bio Unleaded 98'. They are as the name suggests 95 and 98 RON Unleaded mixed with 10% Ethanol. I dont believe they operate in the eastern states, leastways not under the SAFF or NTFF banner. For more information on these products their URL is below
www.saff.com.au (http://www.saff.com.au)

Tony From West Oz
31st January 2007, 01:05 AM
Significant research on the Energy balance of coppiced trees has been done by Dr Hongwei Wu of Curtin University "The energy efficiency of biofuels production"
Regards,
Tony

Messalina
31st January 2007, 02:18 PM
Thanks. Tony, have you read the research on coppiced trees? As far as I understand, cellulosic ethanol can be made from various feedstock including trees. Due to my lack of scientific understanding, I'm not sure what types of trees are viable. Would a shrub like Kenaf extract ethanol? Sorry for rather layman questions, but I'm new to this biofuel arena...

Tony From West Oz
1st February 2007, 12:47 AM
Thanks. Tony, have you read the research on coppiced trees? As far as I understand, cellulosic ethanol can be made from various feedstock including trees. Due to my lack of scientific understanding, I'm not sure what types of trees are viable. Would a shrub like Kenaf extract ethanol? Sorry for rather layman questions, but I'm new to this bio-fuel arena...
The technique of coppicing is used to minimise inputs in planting the trees after each harwest.

Local varieties of trees would be preferred from an environmental basis, to minimise negative impacts on local fauna. Extensive monoculture even of local species would still cause an imbalance in the biodiversity of that area.
The proposal was to use the strip planting of these trees to provide salt reduction by lowering groundwater levels, capture summer rains and provide shelter for livestock using the strips between the tree lines. There is a reduced productivity of adjacent crops, but overall productivity is expected to be higher.

A search on Hongwei Wu and you may find his paper. I do have an electronic copy if your search is fruitless.

Tony

Messalina
1st February 2007, 11:11 AM
Thanks Tony - I'll have a look for the paper on the university database. Cheers.

Messalina
1st February 2007, 02:58 PM
Thanks. Tony, have you read the research on coppiced trees? As far as I understand, cellulosic ethanol can be made from various feedstock including trees. Due to my lack of scientific understanding, I'm not sure what types of trees are viable. Would a shrub like Kenaf extract ethanol? Sorry for rather layman questions, but I'm new to this biofuel arena...

To answer my own question after a little research, kenaf can indeed produce biofuel. The Arizona Fuel and Fiber Company in the U.S., for example, have experimented with kenaf - resulting in their product KEFANOL.

Tony From West Oz
2nd February 2007, 12:04 AM
Rather than introduce another exotic species to Australia, or transplant specie from NSW or QLD to WA, SA or Vic, I prefer to look at local species and use them as the feedstock.

If you search on "Narrogin Mallee oil" you should find a project which is taking mallee trees (2 local varieties) which are planted in lanes, and coppiced to provide feedstock for the Eucalyptus oil extraction and Activated charcoal plant, the heat from this process drives a small power generation station.

This same feedstock could be used for ethanol production.

Eucalyptus oil can be used as a co-solvent to permit hydrous ethanol to be blended with petrol, without separation. (normally required anhydrous ethanol)

Plenty of information out there, you just need to search for it.

Tony

TroyH
3rd April 2007, 10:27 PM
How unexpected! Hongwei was one of my university lecturers last year! In theory, any cellulose material could be used to produce ethanol. The trick is in being able to produce the right enzymes to work in the environment the cellulose is found in. I've even heard suggestions of it being produced from recycled paper.

There was a recent article in Scientific American magazine, entitled "Can ethanol replace gasoline?" (Scientific American, January 2007, p28) which was quite interesting.

Have you done much investigation into the local industry Tony? I might have to pick your brain at the next WARFA meeting if I'm able to get there.

biomassguy
21st January 2008, 08:20 PM
There is cellulosic ethanol is being researched at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane. The QUT Centre is called the "Syngenta Centre for Sugarcane Biofuel Development". I think it is just starting up. There were a few jobs advertised there very recently.