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Transportation fuels of the future: Nottingham leads the way
Date:1/27/2009

Fruit and veg may be good for you but in 10 years time we could be replacing fossil fuels and helping to save our planet by using the inedible bits that we throw away to run our cars, boats and planes.

The University of Nottingham is to lead the way in the development of sustainable bioenergy fuels Ethanol and Butanol. These sustainable bioenergy fuels use non-food crops, such as willow, industrial and agricultural waste products and inedible parts of crops, such as straw, so do not take products out of the food chain.

The University of Nottingham is leading two of six research projects being run by the national 27m BBSRC Sustainable Bioenergy Centre which was announced in London today January 27 2009. This will be the biggest ever single UK public investment in bioenergy research. The centre has been funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC).

Experts in microbiology and brewing science at The University of Nottingham will be leading the two five-year research programmes.

Katherine Smart, Professor of Brewing Science in the School of Biosciences, and a world leading fermentation scientist, will lead a team of researchers hoping to develop yeast capable of breaking down plant cell walls. Scientists will then be able to break down the inedible and unusable parts of plants such as the skin and stalks to produce ethanol. They will be collaborating with University of Bath, University of Surrey, BP, Bioethanol Ltd, Briggs of Burton, British Sugar, Coors Brewers, DSM, Ethanol Technology, HGCA, Pursuit Dynamics, SABMiller and Scottish Whisky Research Institute.

Professor Katherine Smart said: "The government is committed to producing replacement transport fuels. We can already buy petrol with five per cent ethanol in it but this is imported and it is important that Britain has strong energy security. Our fuel will be produced through materials which currently end up in landfill or simpl
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Contact: Professor Katherine Smart
katherine.smart@nottingham.ac.uk
44-011-595-16214
University of Nottingham
Source:Eurekalert

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