Winter barley-to-ethanol byproducts useful for fuel production

By | January 04, 2010
Research at the USDA Agricultural Research Service's Eastern Regional Research Center has shown that the barley straw, hulls and distillers grains byproducts of winter barley ethanol production can be used to manufacture biomass-derived fuels and coproducts, including bio-oil and biochar.

These fuels are created through a pyrolysis process that involves the chemical decomposition of organic substances through heating.

Bio-oil can be used as a boiler fuel. With some improvements, the substance also has potential to be converted into green gasoline and diesel products at petroleum refineries. Biochar is a carbon-rich product that can be used to improve soil fertility and sequester carbon in the soil.