jump to navigation

Ethanol from Carbon Monoxide April 24, 2007

Posted by Brian Angliss in Energy & the Environment.

LanzaTech of Auckland, New Zealand, announced today that it had acquired funding from a founder of Sun Microsystems to scale up their ethanol production technology. What makes LanzaTech’s technology interesting is that it’s not based on yeast digesting sugars like corn and sugarcane ethanol is (and that cellulosic ethanol probably would be), but instead uses bacteria to convert carbon monoxide into ethanol.

This is a radical departure from the current standards because, as this NYTimes article mentions, carbon monoxide is an industrial waste product. While the NYTimes mentions the production of steel, other sources of carbon monoxide include chemical plants and power plants. Unfortunately, the most carbon monoxide emissions come from the transportation sector (cars, trucks, airplanes, etc.) instead of the energy or industrial sectors, and it probably won’t be feasible to put an ethanol generator on every car made anytime soon.

This company, and their technology, is something to keep an eye on.

[Crossposted from Scholars and Rogues]


1. Sam Smith - April 24, 2007

And as you have observed before, there’s no magic bullet. Until we find one, we have to aggressively pursue solutions that solve pieces of the problem.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: