Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Producing New U.S. Energy Crops By The Barrel

Date:
October 21, 2008
Source:
USDA/Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
Scientists have produced oils of camelina, canola, Cuphea, lesquerella, milkweed and pennycress by the barrelful in a commercial-scale pilot plant.

ARS researchers have produced oils by the barrelful from cuphea and other alternative crops, which may represent new domestic sources of industrial products ranging from soap to biofuels for cars, trucks and--in the case of Cuphea--even jet fuel.
Credit: Photo by Keith Weller

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists in Peoria, Ill., have produced oils of camelina, canola, Cuphea, lesquerella, milkweed and pennycress by the barrelful in their commercial-scale pilot plant.

These alternative crops may be able to provide alternative domestic sources of industrial products ranging from soap to biofuels for cars, trucks and—in the case of Cuphea—even jet fuel.

Plant physiologist Russ Gesch and colleagues at the ARS North Central Soil Conservation Research Laboratory in Morris, Minn., have studied Cuphea since 1999. They work closely with companies such as Procter & Gamble of Cincinnati, Ohio. Procter & Gamble uses the type of fatty acids found in Cuphea to make laundry detergent and other products.

The Morris scientists also work hand-in-hand with Terry Isbell and others at the ARS New Crops and Processing Technology Research Unit, part of the agency's National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research in Peoria. Gesch and his co-workers study ways to grow the crops profitably, while Isbell and his colleagues focus on methods of processing the crops into industrial products.

These crops all offer ways to sustainably grow fuel and industrial products without depleting either the U.S. food supply or soils. The Morris scientists also are beginning a long-term study of a corn-soybean crop rotation plan that includes grasses for making cellulosic ethanol: switchgrass, big bluestem, indiangrass, and a sorghum-Sudangrass hybrid.

Their goal is to develop cropping systems for optimal biomass production while maintaining or enhancing soil productivity.

For example, when farmers plant pennycress as a winter crop, followed by soybean as a summer crop, they are producing fuel in the winter and food in the summer.

Cuphea is one of the few sources of oils in the United States that contain the type of fatty acids needed to make soaps, cosmetics, motor oils and industrial lubricants. These oils currently are produced commercially only in the tropics, from palm kernel and coconut oils.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA/Agricultural Research Service. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Producing New U.S. Energy Crops By The Barrel." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 October 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081013195803.htm>.
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. (2008, October 21). Producing New U.S. Energy Crops By The Barrel. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081013195803.htm
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Producing New U.S. Energy Crops By The Barrel." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081013195803.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) Two white lion cubs, an extremely rare subspecies of the African lion, were recently born at Belgrade Zoo. They are being bottle fed by zoo keepers after they were rejected by their mother after birth. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) He is leading a one man agricultural revolution in Mali - Oumar Diatabe uses traditional farming methods to get the most out of his land and is teaching others across the country how to do the same. Duration: 01:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Goliath Spider Will Give You Nightmares

Goliath Spider Will Give You Nightmares

Buzz60 (Oct. 20, 2014) An entomologist stumbled upon a South American Goliath Birdeater. With a name like that, you know it's a terrifying creepy crawler. Sean Dowling (@SeanDowlingTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Adorable Video of Baby Rhino and Lamb Friend Playing

Adorable Video of Baby Rhino and Lamb Friend Playing

Buzz60 (Oct. 20, 2014) Gertjie the Rhino and Lammie the Lamb are teaching the world about animal conservation and friendship. TC Newman (@PurpleTCNewman) has the adorable video! Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins