Grand Challenges in Sustainable Biofuels Production

Originally delivered Apr 22, 2009
  • Type:
    Archived Webinar
  • Level:
    Intermediate
  • Duration:
    1 hour
  • PDHs:
    1.00

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It is now clear that, for many reasons, corn has serious limitations as feedstock for biofuel production. While cellulosic biomass can potentially provide a sizable fraction of the US liquid fuel needs for transportation, current technologies must be further improved to realize cost-competitive processes for cellulosic biofuels. This presentation will discuss three major scientific and engineering challenges to this end. Identification of these challenges is based on an analysis of the biomass-to-biofuels value chain which allows assessment of present production costs as well as their sensitivity to changes at critical steps of the value chain. This exercise guides establishing of research priorities and also supports guarded optimism for the development of competitive processes for fuel production from renewable resources in the intermediate future.

Presenter(s): 

Gregory Stephanopoulos

Greg Stephanopoulos is presently the W.H. Dow Professor of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology at MIT, and Instructor of Bioengineering at Harvard Medical School (1997-). He received his BS from the National Technical University of Athens, MS degree from the U. of Florida and PhD from the U. of Minnesota, all in Chemical Engineering. He taught at Caltech between 1978-85, after which he was appointed Professor of ChE at MIT. His current research focuses on metabolic engineering, the engineering of microbes for the production of fuels and chemicals. He has co-authored or –edited 5 books,...Read more

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