U.S. pushes to develop commercially-viable bio-oil

October 24, 2013
October 24, 2013, Oklahoma City, Okla. – The U.S. Department of Energy is providing a $3 million grant to fund research on the development of a commercially-viable bio-oil.

The multi-disciplinary research team have been charged with developing a biomass conversion process to obtain bio-oil compatible with refinery options.

Led by a team from the University of Oklahoma, the project will be a collaboration that will include research team at the Idaho National Laboratory, the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Wisconsin.

The approach proposed by OU provides significant improvement over existing commercial and previously proposed technologies. Existing processes have limitations that result in low-carbon yield or high-hydrogen consumption. A fundamental problem with these technologies is that the complex bio-oil presents different problems that cannot be solved with a single solution.

Daniel Resasco, professor in the OU School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering, and his team have gained invaluable experience in this area through previous research and a grant from the DOE EPSCoR program, but the research focused mainly on the chemistry required to produce bio-oil. In the current grant, the chemistry will be applied in the development of a marketable product.

 

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