Inside August 2008


The Truth About Food and Fuel

BY Ron Kotrba, Dave Nilles, Kris Bevill, Jessica SoboThe 24th International Fuel Ethanol Workshop & Expo was held June 16-19 in Nashville, Tenn., in the midst of record-busting energy prices and serious charges against the industry posed by Big Oil and "Big Food." READ MORE

Microbial Tricks for the Cellulosic Ethanol Trade

BY Jessica EbertIn two recently reported research projects, scientists describe how they have taken cues from microbes that may ultimately lead to more efficient and cost-competitive production of biofuels. READ MORE

The Mystery of Modularizing

BY Anna AustinA top modularizing firm, Roeslein & Associates Inc., has formed a partnership with BlueFire Ethanol Inc. to integrate its concepts into the construction of a new ethanol biorefinery. They have now opened a door into the world of renewable energy—serving as a short cut to the market. READ MORE

The Role of DDGS in the Food-Versus-Fuel Debate

BY Ron KotrbaAs mainstream media continues its tirade against biofuels in the food-versus-fuel debate, many aren't aware of or ignore distillers grains and how it fits into the picture. READ MORE

Connecting the Pipes

BY Jessica SobolikEthanol plants may vary in design, but they all need one thing: piping. There are different types of piping that connect the many processes within the facility, and each offers its own advantages. Although this equipment is essential it isn't without its challenges when it comes to labor, maintenance, safety, education and cost. READ MORE

In Pursuit of Fruit

BY Bryan SimsAs the food-versus-fuel debate rages, ethanol producers are searching for nonfood and food-based waste products to make renewable fuel. This has led researchers to take a closer look at watermelons that don't ripen in time for harvest or fail to make the grade for grocery store produce aisles. READ MORE

The Hand That Turns the Wrench

BY Timothy Charles Holmseth / Photos By Howard PfeferEthanol plant technicians who are able to avoid unexpected shutdowns are like money in the bank. Instructors at the Biofuels Automation University in Plymouth, Minn., believe that with highly trained technicians and the technology available today, there should be no unscheduled downtime in an ethanol facility. READ MORE

FFVs Flourish in Sweden

BY Eric KrohThe Swedish people take the environment and their need to reduce oil use seriously. That attitude is reflected in their use of flexible-fuel vehicles, which has increased from 717 in 2001 to more than 100,000 today. READ MORE

Beating Back Bad Bugs

BY Jerry W. KramBacterial contamination is one of the banes of ethanol production. Producers spend a considerable amount of money on sanitation and antibiotics trying to control bacteria in their fermentation tanks. A new system will not only reduce bacteria in the fermentation tanks, but also prevent re-infection. As a bonus, the new system leaves distillers grains free from antibiotic residues. READ MORE

The Value of Branding

BY Rona JohnsonIn a growing industry having preferred status with customers is essential. A Sioux Falls, S.D., company has developed a way to help renewable energy companies define their brands and distinguish themselves among their competitors. READ MORE

Embracing the Carbohydrate Economy

BY Susanne Retka SchillIndustry and academic research leaders share new research leads and emerging technologies for corn use at the 2008 Corn Utilization and Technology Conference. READ MORE

GM Crops and Biofuels

BY Jon EvansAre European biofuels producers being disadvantaged because some countries won't allow the production or importation of genetically modified crops? READ MORE

Building the Next Generation

BY Bryan SimsWith the advent of cellulosic ethanol, design/build teams are gearing up for the commercialization of the next generation of biofuels, and at the same time are continuing to be involved in corn-based ethanol, where they built their reputations. EPM talked with some of the big names in the industry to get their view on this challenging transitional period. READ MORE

Where in the Northeast is E85

BY Kris BevillOne can easily drive through the U.S. Midwest and run across an E85 station before it's time to refuel. There may even be a couple different stations to choose from. Ethanol marketers in the Northeast can only dream about that kind of distribution, but they're working hard to make it a reality. READ MORE

Breaking the Catalytic Barrier to Biofuels

BY Jessica EbertWhether it's enzymes for degrading cellulose, microbes for fermenting sugars into ethanol or solid particles for the reforming of syngas to ethanol, the development of highly active and selective catalysts for biofuels production will be key to the success of the industry. READ MORE

Indy's Super Fuel

BY Craig A. Johnson / Photos by Craig A. JohnsonSince 2006, Indy Racing League competitors have been using ethanol to fuel their hopes for a checkered flag. Making sure that quality is never sacrificed in the process is the job of PerkinElmer Inc. EPM goes to the Milwaukee Mile to experience the power of Indy racing and to see firsthand what goes into testing the fuel for this high-octane environment. READ MORE


Overcoming Challenges in the Boardroom

BY Tracy Houston and Cindy Knutson

Treating Digester Off-Gas from Wet Mill Ethanol Production

BY Kenneth D. Jones, Steve Black and Tony Barnette

Distilled - Ethanol News & Trends

GMA launches campaign

BY Jerry W. Kram