Wolf's Blog

 


8-31-11

Well, it is a Wacky Wednesday and what better way to find out how wacky your hard earned money is spent by our wonderful government.
 
Deep down we all are a little green. To some extent would like to see options in fuels. It is nice to have options. So what is the latest material known to produce biofuels????
 
Panda Poop.
 
That’s right. The microbes in the feces of giant pandas break down super-tough plant material in grass, corn stalks and wood chips. If all the testing is proven, inedible plants and plant waste could be used as biofuels instead of edible corn.
 
Scientists spent a year collecting and analyzing panda feces at the Memphis Zoo. They found several types of digestive bacteria similar to bacteria found in termite guts. These bacteria help termites break down and digest wood. In pandas, they probably help with the digestion of woody bamboo shoots.
 
Studies suggest that bacteria species in the panda intestine may be more efficient at breaking down plant materials than termite bacteria and may do so in a way that is better for biofuels.
 
Under certain conditions, the panda poop bacteria can covert 95 percent of plant biomass into simple sugars. The powerful enzymes in the bacteria speed up chemical reactions, eliminating the need for high heat, harsh acids and high pressures currently used to produce biofuels. Bacteria would also be a more energy-efficient way to turn materials such as switch grass, corn stalks and wood chips into fuel scientists said.
 
The study was funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. And you wondered where the money you pay in taxes goes.  
 
Have a lovely Wacky Wednesday
 
Later

Wolf


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08/31/2011 11:06AM
8-31-11
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