Corn Husks a Promising Source of Renewable Fuel
(Yahoo! News/Agence France-Presse) US scientists said Monday they have found a way to use discarded corn husks and stalks to make cheap hydrogen fuel that doesn’t pollute the environment like fossil fuels.
The advances by a team at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University save time and money while producing a zero-emissions fuel that could speed up the movement toward hydrogen-powered vehicles, said the report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a peer-reviewed US journal.
“We have demonstrated the most important step toward a hydrogen economy — producing distributed and affordable green hydrogen from local biomass resources,” said study co-author Percival Zhang, a professor in the Department of Biological Systems Engineering at Virginia Tech.
The study was led by Joe Rollin, a former doctoral student of Zhang’s at Virginia Tech. Together they co-founded a start-up company called Cell-free Bioinnovations.
The process builds on previous research using xylose, “the most abundant simple plant pentose sugar, to produce hydrogen yields that previously were attainable only in theory,” said the PNAS report. READ MORE Abstract (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences)