I've already posted about a team of college students and their professor who are working on a way to turn ethanol into an emission-free hydrogen fuel cell. Proving that the universities have the money, the brains, and the labs it takes to encourage true scientific exploration, Iowa State University chemist Victor Lin and his partners are also working on green car technology--but they're studying ways to make biodiesel better.
Among the problems with traditional biodiesels are the catalysts for the reactions that convert soybean and other vegetable oils into usable fuel. It's not easy to turn beans into gasoline, and the reactions used in the production of biodiesels are highly toxic and difficult to dispose of. Lin and his team, though, have developed catalysts that are easier to filter out of the fuel and can be reused. It's a baby step, to be sure, but an important one. [Source: Des Moines Register, and thanks again to Joel A. for the tip.]


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