Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Lemons Fly As Jet Fuel Of The Future
AsianScientist ^ | October 17, 2013

Posted on 10/18/2013 11:03:11 PM PDT by nickcarraway

A researcher at the University of Queensland hopes to use a chemical found in lemons and other citrus fruits to make clean, renewable jet fuel.

Dr Claudia Vickers is modifying baker’s yeast to produce a synthetic form of the natural chemical limonene.

“Limonene is a volatile chemical that is best known for contributing to the smell of citrus fruits,” Dr Vickers said.

Limonene was first identified in turpentine oil in the late 1800s and is now used as a flavour and fragrance in foods, household cleaning products, and perfumes. It also holds promise as an anti-cancer agent.

Dr Vickers’ research at the Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (AIBN) builds on earlier research which demonstrated that sucrose from sugarcane is one of the best biofuel feedstocks available in the Australian state Queensland.

The feasibility research had the backing of industry partners including Boeing, Virgin Australia, Mackay Sugar, IOR Energy and US biotech company Amyris.

Dr Vickers said the environmental benefits of using limonene as a fuel were particularly exciting. “It might sound unlikely, but limonene one day could be a renewable, clean source of aviation fuel,” she said.

“Fifty per cent of a 747′s weight on take-off is its fuel.”

“If you consider all the planes flying around in the world, that’s a lot of fuel – and non-sustainable fossil resource carbon – being emitted in the atmosphere.”

Limonene extracted from citrus peel had been used successfully as a jet fuel component in demonstration flights in the past.

“However large-scale limonene production from citrus peel is impractical,” Dr Vickers said.

“Producing it in yeast should provide a route to much greater yields of limonene which are easier to extract.”

Limonene yields from the modified yeast are not yet high enough to be commercially viable, but Dr Vickers has plans to further modify the yeast for improved yields. The same technology could be used to make a variety of other sustainable products from limonene, including rubbers, plastics, and paints.

“Currently 80 per cent of Australian sugar is exported. Instead of exporting sugar, we could export value-added products worth much more – or use them to replace non-renewable products in our own domestic market,” said Dr Vickers.

“As the amount of easily-extractible fossil fuels decreases and the demand for alternatives to petrochemicals increases, these markets will become more and more important.”

It is hoped that chemicals derived from yeast can play a role in future-proofing the Queensland economy by capturing part of the $2 trillion global chemical market. A United States Department of Agriculture report predicts “green chemicals” produced using biomass will represent 22 per cent of the chemical market by 2025.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Food; Science
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 10/18/2013 11:03:11 PM PDT by nickcarraway
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: nickcarraway

2 posted on 10/18/2013 11:06:25 PM PDT by dfwgator
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: dfwgator

Lemons are easier on the flux capacitor.


3 posted on 10/18/2013 11:09:21 PM PDT by nickcarraway
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: nickcarraway
When life hands you lemons...

...make Jet A.

4 posted on 10/18/2013 11:13:43 PM PDT by Rodamala
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: nickcarraway

It is always we cannot do it now, but in the future after more work it might be possible pie in the sky.


5 posted on 10/18/2013 11:17:04 PM PDT by jonrick46 (The opium of Communists: other people's money.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: nickcarraway

I know about Lemons.

I owned a Vega.


6 posted on 10/19/2013 1:16:36 AM PDT by hadaclueonce (dont worry about Mexico, put the fence around kalifornia.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: jonrick46

It is always we cannot do it now, but in the future after more work it might be possible pie in the sky.

Actually, “after more investment” would be the proper phrase..


7 posted on 10/19/2013 3:36:10 AM PDT by ArtDodger
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: nickcarraway

“As the amount of easily-extractible fossil fuels decreases and the demand for alternatives to petrochemicals increases, these markets will become more and more important.”

Forget fracking, this has to be easier.


8 posted on 10/19/2013 3:52:05 AM PDT by If You Want It Fixed - Fix It
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: nickcarraway

“If you consider all the planes flying around in the world, that’s a lot of fuel – and non-sustainable fossil resource carbon – being emitted in the atmosphere.”

What a quote! Replacing one carbon compound for another = same number of carbon dioxide molecules in the atmosphere!


9 posted on 10/19/2013 3:53:27 AM PDT by If You Want It Fixed - Fix It
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: If You Want It Fixed - Fix It

If u believe that you’ll believe anything.


10 posted on 10/19/2013 5:26:00 AM PDT by DIRTYSECRET (urope. Why do they put up with this.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: DIRTYSECRET
“If you consider all the planes flying around in the world, that’s a lot of fuel – and non-sustainable fossil resource carbon – being emitted in the atmosphere.”

So burning a limonene based fuel emits what...Skittles???
11 posted on 10/19/2013 5:37:01 AM PDT by 762X51
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson