For many people, ethanol seems like a new product, although it’s anything but. What is new is how researchers are finding new products that can be made from ethanol itself.
At the recent CUTC, one of the presentations was “Reactive Distillations for Chemical Products from Ethanol” by Carl Lira, Michigan State University. I spoke with him about the work he’s doing in this area.
Carl says he’s looking at methods to diversify the ethanol production platform. For example, he’s looking at new products that can be made from ethanol so that producers can diversify and react to the market in different ways. He’s trying to get them to think with more of a bio refinery philosophy. From a product standpoint, he’s using ethanol as a reagent to produce high quality chemicals.
He says they’ve done some economic analysis which is available from NCGA and that it looks very attractive.
You can listen to my interview with Carl here: [audio:http://www.zimmcomm.biz/ncga/cutc-08-carl-lira.mp3]