Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Diesel from Bacteria

So I'm not holding my breath waiting for biofuels from algae or whatever but nevertheless this is interesting as it shows just how far we're coming along in the development of biotech with plug-in parts to the genome that do exactly what we want them to do:

Professor John Love from Biosciences at the University of Exeter and his team have modified the ubiquitos E.Coli bacteria to produce a bio-equivalent version of diesel.

This is revolutionary because it's not just some kind of fatty acid or ester which needs a convoluted and possibly energy intensive method to process the chemicals into diesel or gasoline, instead it's a drop-in replacement.

Prof Love and his team worked with Shell on this and though it's not ready for commercialization and still faces a number of hurdles to bring it there, it's nevertheless very interesting.

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