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Funding & Incentives

U.S. puts $15 million into ‘bio-oils’ for blending with petroleum

The United States Department of Energy is putting $15 million on research into biomass-based oil supplements that can be blended with petroleum.

These “bio-oils,” derived from biomass sources, are seen as precursors for fully renewable transportation fuels and can be integrated into conventional oil refining and distribution processes without modification.

Bio-oils can be produced from a range of feedstocks such as algae, corn and wheat stover, dedicated energy crops or wood residue. A common method of converting biomass to bio-oil involves pyrolysis, where the feedstock is broken down using heat in the absence of oxygen.

The Energy Department expects to fully fund between five to 10 projects in the fiscal year to produce bio-oil prototypes that can be tested in oil refineries and used to develop comprehensive technical and economic analyses of how bio-oils can work.

The domestic industry, universities and laboratories can apply for the funding. The results of the projects will inform future efforts in advancing bio-oil technologies and bringing them to market, the agency said. – EcoSeed Staff

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