The last few decades saw the need for a better, environment-friendly fuel take the research community by storm. Some promising biofuel sources have been found by using certain everyday products. As absurd as they may sound, the scientific community is going gaga over finding the much-needed solution to the world’s fuel problems through these sources. Scroll down to see a few which everyday items may give us the ultimate solution:
- Sugar: Hydrogen is one of the best clean fuels available at the moment. But redeeming hydrogen from fossil fuels brings in new complications which is why scientists got creative with the source of hydrogen and, you guessed it, experimented with sugar, calling the project, “Sweet Hydrogen”. This project aims at revolutionizing transportation fuel since water is the only byproduct of hydrogen.
- Solar Wind: Solar winds have enough energy to power the whole world. Energy as much as billions of gigawatts would probably solve a lot of our problems if we figure this one thing out – how to transport all this energy to earth. Scientists at Washington State University published a paper with an instrument which can channel the energized electrons of the solar wind towards earth. It includes a 0.4-inch thick copper wire and a solar sail.
- Carbon Nanotubes: Carbon nanotubes or CNTs are rolled sheets of graphene that possess immense strength, enough to load goods between earth and moon. CNTs can particularly solve many mechanical and electrical energy problems due to their 1-D quantum confinement. This makes them flexible enough to be used in not just electrical devices but also transistors and sensors too.
- Sludge: Anaerobic decomposition of compounds underground produces methane gas. This methane gas, instead of being released into the environment, can be used as a biofuel. Hence, if you never thought sludge could be of any use, it is rather great biomass. A few countries that have realized this are USA, China, Norway, Brazil, and Argentina.
- Bacteria: Scientists at the University of East Anglia’s Department of Biological Sciences powered electricity on the surface of electrodes by embedding thousands of molecular wires on the surface of bacteria. This led to further studies on ‘Bio-Batteries’. These batteries are microbial fuel cells that, although produce tiny amounts of electricity, are super environment-friendly. Somewhere in the future, we shall commercially be able to use them as well.
Technological advancements are surely a priority but not at the expense of the environment. Studies, researches and inventions on and around biomass to create that near-perfect biofuel will continue to take place for decades to come, with new findings all along the path.