Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
AgriGenomics
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

USDA Announces Investments in Bioenergy Research and Development

Published: Tuesday, January 22, 2013
Last Updated: Tuesday, January 22, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced $25 million to fund research and development of next-generation renewable energy and high-value biobased products from a variety of biomass sources.

"USDA's continuing investments in research and development are proving a critical piece of President Obama's strategy to spur innovation of clean bioenergy right here at home and reduce our dependence on foreign oil," said Vilsack. "The advances made through this research will help to boost local economies throughout rural America, creating and sustaining good-paying jobs, while moving our nation toward a clean energy economy."

The projects announced today are funded by USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) through the Biomass Research and Development Initiative, established in the 2008 Farm Bill. The funded research will help increase the availability of alternative renewable fuels and biobased products to diversify the nation's energy resources. The Department of Energy will make additional awards through this program. Each award was made through a competitive selection process.

Grant recipients are required to contribute a minimum of 20 percent matching funds for research and development projects and 50 percent matching funds for demonstration projects. Awardees must pursue projects that integrate science and engineering research in three areas: feedstocks development, biofuels and biobased products development, and biofuels and bioproducts development analysis.

The following projects have been selected for awards:

•    Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kan., $5,078,932. The goal of this project is to make the oilseed crop camelina a cost-effective biofuel and bioproduct feedstock. Camelina production will be incorporated into a cropping system with wheat-based crop rotations in Montana and Wyoming. Once harvested and processed, camelina oil and meal will be chemically converted to a variety of adhesives, coatings and composites. A life cycle analysis from agronomic production to end products will assess the feasibility of a nonfood oilseed as a sustainable resource with minimal negative impact on food crop systems or the environment and will provide needed information for decision-making on camelina production as a replacement for fallow in wheat-based systems.
•    Ohio State University, Wooster, Ohio, $6,510,183. This project will result in an anaerobic digestion system for the production of liquid transportation fuels and electricity from animal manure, agricultural residues, woody biomass and energy crops. The novel anaerobic digestion system will be integrated with partial oxidation and Fisher-Tropsch technologies to produce gasoline. A life cycle analysis will incorporate thermodynamic principles to assess the resource use, energy/fuel production and the environmental impact of the conversion technologies.
•    Ceramatec, Inc., Salt Lake City, Utah, $6,599,304. This project will convert lignocellulosic biomass to infrastructure-compatible renewable diesel, biolubricants, animal feed and biopower. New hybrids of energy sorghum will be developed, and other biomass resources include switchgrass and forestry residues. The biomass will be converted to hydrocarbons (molecules that are just like petroleum based hydrocarbons but derived from biomass) using innovative pretreatment, fermentation and electrochemical technologies. These hydrocarbons will be finished into premium synthetic bio-lubricants and biofuels via commercial petroleum refinery processes. A life cycle analysis will include energy efficiency impacts and assessment of impacts on rural development.
•    USDA-Agricultural Research Service, Eastern Regional Research Center, Wyndmoor, Pa., $6,865,942. ARS scientists will develop an on-the-farm distributed technology for converting forest residues, horse manure, switchgrass and other perennial grasses into biofuels and high-value specialty chemicals. The process will be implemented at on-the-farm scale using a patent-pending unit that will mimic the petroleum industry's catalytic cracking process. The project integrates a life cycle assessment from collection and handling of the biomass to end products and will use thermodynamic principles to assess its sustainability.

USDA is working to develop the biofuels industry in every region of the country. In addition to today's awards, USDA has previously announced major support for public and private research in renewable energy and products in every major American region, aimed at developing renewable energy markets, generating rural jobs, and decreasing America's dependence on foreign oil. By partnering with industry, the research is enabling private-sector partners to produce advanced ready-to-use liquid transportation and aviation biofuels.

In addition, USDA is helping companies build biorefineries—including the first ever commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol facilities—and supporting farmers, ranchers, and businesses taking risks to pursue new opportunities in biofuels. More than 130 biodiesel and ethanol projects funded by USDA are currently producing almost 3.7 billion gallons of biodiesel and ethanol annually, enough fuel—in equivalence to gasoline—to keep five million vehicles on the road every year.

Through federal funding and leadership for research, education and extension programs, NIFA focuses on investing in science and solving critical issues impacting people's daily lives and the nation's future.


Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 3,300+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 5,000+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

USDA and USAID Collaborate
Collaboration to improve productivity of the common bean to strengthen global food security.
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Scientific News
From Fins to Fingers
New gene-editing methods help the mapping of cells linking fish fins and mammalian limbs.
Unravelling a Microbial Mess
Scientists have untangled the Kansas-based mess of microbes more fully than scientists have ever done for a sample of soil.
Researchers Sequence Genome of Tobacco Hornworm
A Kansas State University-led international team has sequenced the genome of the tobacco hornworm — a caterpillar species used in many research laboratories for studies of insect biology.
Zeroing In On Better Mandarin Traits
Scientists from the University of Florida have identified genetic markers that could be used to increase mandarin quality.
The Genetics Behind Anxiety Disorders
Anxiety disorders are the most common type of mental illness in the United States. And while much is understood about the biochemistry of anxiety, little is known about the genetic variation associated with it.
How Cloud Connectivity Can Combat the Reproducibility Crisis
This infographic explains the reproducibility crisis, and how cloud connectivity can help overcome this problem.
Genome Sequencing May Help Avert Banana Armageddon
Researchers at the University of California, Davis, and in the Netherlands have discovered how three fungal diseases have evolved into a lethal threat to the world’s bananas.
Virus Attracts Bumblebees to Infected Plants by Changing Scent
Study of bee-manipulating plant virus reveals that replicating the scent caused by infection could encourage declining bee populations to pollinate crops.
Small Molecules to Help Make SMARTER Cereals
University of Adelaide researchers are rethinking plant breeding strategies to improve the development of new high-yielding, stress-tolerant cereal varieties.
'Yin and Yang' Switch Lies at the Heart of Animal Stem Cells
A molecular switch that flips between different versions of genes could be crucial for maintaining stem cells across all animals from simple flatworms to humans, according to a study from scientists at the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG) in Barcelona.
SELECTBIO

SELECTBIO Market Reports
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
3,300+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
5,000+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FOR FREE!