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Bioenergy News

November 19, 2018

News Release: R&D Magazine Honors Duo of NREL Innovations

Given annually by R&D Magazine, the awards honor the 100 most innovative technologies of the past year and were chosen by an independent panel of judges.

November 14, 2018

NREL Shifts Carbon Fiber Research into Second Gear

Ongoing research at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory could lead to a cleaner method of transforming acrylonitrile into carbon fiber, replacing petrochemicals with biomass as the starting point.

November 1, 2018

Molecular Scientists Unlock Sustainable Route Toward Hydrocarbons

A computational modeling team in NREL's Biosciences Center made a significant discovery regarding the key aspects of a cytochrome P450 enzyme that enable it to transform fatty acids directly to olefinic hydrocarbons, an important constituent of gasoline.

October 3, 2018

NREL's Biomass Analysis Tools Celebrate a Decade as the Industry Standard

After nearly 10 years, the NREL-developed High Throughput Pipeline Tools have been delivering solid biomass composition analysis for researchers around the world.

September 28, 2018

Nitrilation Process Produces Acrylonitrile, Attention, and Awards

NREL's clean, cost-competitive nitrilation process to produce a bio-based acrylonitrile is grabbing attention...and awards. This summer, alone, the process technology has been recognized with the Federal Laboratory Consortium (FLC) Mid-Continent Region Notable Technology Development Award, the CO-Labs Governor's Award, and has been named a 2018 R&D 100 Award finalist.

September 6, 2018

NREL Interns Energize the Laboratory

NREL Summer Interns unbox their potential to explore their passions in renewable energy.

July 11, 2018

First Standard for Chemical Characterization of Bio-Oil Approved by ASTM: NREL Paves the Way Towards Commercialization

The path toward biofuel commercialization became easier with a recent NREL-developed bio-oil standard that was approved by ASTM International. The standard quantifies the total carbonyl content of complex pyrolysis bio-oils through a faster and more reliable titration method.

June 27, 2018

News Release: Researchers Discover New Enzyme Paradigm for Critical Reaction in Converting Lignin to Useful Products

An international research team, including scientists from NREL, has discovered and characterized a new family of cytochrome P450 enzymes that is critical to improving the conversion of lignin--one of the main components of plants--into valuable products such as nylon, plastics, and chemicals.

June 19, 2018

News Release: Novel Genetic Method Improves Efficiency of Enzyme

Researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the University of Georgia developed a new genetic engineering technique to dramatically improve an enzyme's ability to break down biomass.

June 18, 2018

International Interest in NREL's Fuels and Engines Research

The European Union's goal is for 10% of all of Europe's transportation fuels to come from renewable sources by 2020. In April, CNBC World's international news program "Sustainable Energy" came to NREL to spotlight how the lab's breakthrough biofuels research is advancing progress toward that ambitious objective.

May 22, 2018

Breakdown Breakthrough: NREL Finds Easier Ways to Deconstruct Biomass

Technical challenges have stymied efforts to produce bioethanol on a commercial scale, but research underway at NREL may hold the key to overcoming those barriers.

May 10, 2018

News Release: NREL Names Four Scientists Senior Research Fellows

Mowafak Al-Jassim, Andy Walker, Robert McCormick, and Gregg Beckham were chosen for their significant contributions to NREL and the larger scientific community.

May 9, 2018

News Release: NREL's Gregg Beckham Wins Prestigious Royal Society of Chemistry Award

Gregg Beckham, a senior research fellow and group leader at NREL, was awarded the prize for the development of hybrid biological-catalytic and recycling processes to convert biomass and waste plastics to useful chemicals and high-value materials.

May 8, 2018

Remember the Algae that Went to Space? Here's What Happened Next

NREL scientists and Chatfield High School students are seeing the results of their collaborative experiment that sent a novel bioreactor housing two different strains of algae into space last summer.

April 18, 2018

Co-Optima Transportation Ingenuity Capitalizes on Strengths of U.S. Energy Resources and Existing Infrastructure

The FY17 Year in Review describes recent advances including identification of key properties for new fuels, assessment of compatibility with vehicle components and infrastructure, and expansion of research to encompass solutions for the entire on-road fleet. This research effort, led by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), is providing industry with the scientific underpinnings needed to accelerate introduction of high-performance fuels and engines that reduce energy consumption, improve air quality, and lower drivers' costs.

April 13, 2018

News Release: Research Team Engineers a Better Plastic-Degrading Enzyme

A breakthrough in enzyme research led by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and the United Kingdom's University of Portsmouth has led to an improved variant of an enzyme that can breakdown ubiquitous plastic bottles made of polyethylene terephthalate, or PET.

March 22, 2018

News Release: NREL Discovers Enzyme Domains that Dramatically Improve Performance

By studying and comparing the workhorse cellulose-degrading enzymes of two fungi, researchers from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory have pinpointed regions on these enzymes that can be targeted via genetic engineering to help break down cellulose faster.

March 8, 2018

NREL Briefs Congressional Committee on Impact of Scientific Innovations on Transportation Future

On March 7, NREL's Laboratory Program Manager for Vehicle Technologies John Farrell briefed the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce on how the Energy Department and the national labs are driving innovation to spur advances in the efficiency and performance of fuels, vehicles, and the broader transportation system.

February 20, 2018

Breakthroughs Move Researchers One Step Closer to $35 Billion Fuel Savings

NREL and its partners recently revealed breakthroughs in identification of fuel blendstocks for the U.S. Department of Energy's Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines initiative. This national research effort is providing industry with the scientific underpinnings needed to accelerate introduction of high-performance fuels and engines that reduce energy consumption, improve air quality, and lower drivers' costs.

February 13, 2018

News Release: NREL Scientists Model Methane-Eating Bacteria

A research team including scientists from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory explored the possibilities provided by the natural world by researching how the bacteria Methylomicrobium alcaliphilum 20ZR uses methane, an abundant greenhouse gas, and converts it to valuable product precursors.

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