Tuesday, October 18, 2011: 1:45 PM
200 A (Minneapolis Convention Center)
In a limited fossil fuel world, liquid fuels from biomass offer a renewable solution for meeting the transportation sector’s fuel needs. In this context, for a given liquid fuel demand, the role of increasing the liquid fuel output per unit of biomass input is critical to reducing the land area requirement for harvesting the feedstock. A grand challenge for chemical engineers is to develop novel processes for converting biomass to high energy density liquid fuels while requiring minimum additional energy input. Moreover, when the additional energy input is derived from solar, increased process energy efficiency would also lead to reduced corresponding land area requirements. Through a systems approach, this presentation will identify some novel biomass-to-liquid fuel pathways based on the efficient use of different forms of supplemental solar energy. In addition, experimental findings pertaining to one particular pathway will also be presented.