Lignin-derived jet fuel displays a superior heat of combustion, higher seal swell properties and a much lower aromatic content compared to Jet-A.
Bin Yang, professor in the Biological Systems Engineering Department at Washington State University (WSU) in Richland, WA, says, “Besides using jet fuel, other propulsion options such as batteries and fuel cells are not suitable for use in long-distance airplance travel in the near future (less than 30 years). This places the aviation industry in the position of needing to find a sustainable alternative to Jet-A. One big concern with using the incumbent jet fuel is its aromatic content, which varies from approximately 8% to 25% by volume, which is key to the density and seal swell characteristics of jet fuel but increases engine soot production. Some approved alternative jet fuels, such as synthetic paraffinic kerosene (SPKs), need the addition of aromatics and others contain aromatics. Ultimately, the aviation industry is seeking a 100% sustainable aviation fuel that produces no emissions.”
An experimental plant-based jet fuel could increase engine performance and efficiency, while dispensing with aromatics, the pollution-causing compounds found in conventional fuels, according to new research.
“When we tested our lignin jet fuel, we saw some interesting results,” said Bin Yang, professor with WSU’s Department of Biological Systems Engineering and corresponding author on the study. “We found that it not only had increased energy density and content but also could totally replace aromatics, which are a real problem for the aviation industry.”
Yang developed a patented process that turns lignin from agricultural waste into bio-based lignin jet fuel. Such sustainable fuel could help the aviation industry reduce dependance on increasingly expensive fossil fuels while meeting higher environmental standards. “This process creates a cleaner, more energy-dense fuel,” Yang added. “That’s exactly what sustainable aviation fuels need for the future.”
Fitria Fnu, a participant in the PNNL-Washington State University Distinguished Graduate Fellowship Program, is working with PNNL researchers to develop sensors that detect refrigerant leaks in air-conditioners. Identifying and addressing these leaks can increase energy efficiency as well as prevent risks to human health and the environment.
The work performed by Fitria Fnu, as well as technologies developed by PNNL, are helping to make air conditioning systems more efficient, reducing energy use and lowering costs. This is exactly what is needed during these hot summer months!
Researchers at Washington State University are part of a national effort to find a higher-value use for such leftovers. The waste, also known as corn stover, is a plentiful source of lignin, a structural molecule used to make advanced jet fuels.
Bin Yang, professor in WSU’s Department of Biological Systems Engineering, is helping to launch a new $3.7 million, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)-funded project, led by researchers at the University of North Dakota. The team will design, build, and test a lignin-based pilot reactor, for the first time studying the commercial viability of the process.
A Washington State University Tri-Cities researcher is producing and testing a group of hydrocarbon molecules made from lignin, a waste material from biofuel production, as a new biojet fuel that could replace petroleum-based fuels and lead to greater performance and reduced emissions.
Bin Yang, professor of biological systems engineering with the Tri-Cities-based Bioproducts, Sciences and Engineering Laboratory, is working with colleagues from the University of Dayton, Phonon Energy, Inc., Polykala Technologies LLC, and Mercurious Biorefining, Inc, on the project. The team recently received a $100,000 grant from the Joint Center for Aerospace Technology Innovation (JCATI) to conduct…
Professor Bin Yang speaks on the topic of “Sustainable Biofuels and the American Dream” during the 27th American Voices Seminar in Turku, Finland. Yang was honored with a Fulbright-Aalto Distinguished Chair award, which is the most prestigious appointment in the Fulbright Program.
In Friday’s second speech, Bin Yang and Eric Hahnert talked about the American dream and its sustainability. Their speech bound social development and the need for sustainable fuels.
Yang introduced the history of US fuel consumption and its environmental impact. Fuel plays an important role in the history of the American Dream, and its easy availability is nowadays considered a fundamental right. The US transportation sector is dependent on crude oil. Transport also generates the most greenhouse gas emissions. Nevertheless, fuel prices have been kept low. Change is needed here, Yang said. Finally, Hahnort and Yang introduced how the concept of the American Dream should be changed. Its core values, along with diligence and freedom, should include sustainability. That would be a chance for future generations to have a positive, American dream of believing in the future.
In her home country of Indonesia, Fitria, who goes by one name, is a team member and former project leader in biomass process technology and bioremediation at the Indonesian Institute of Sciences Research Center for Biomaterials.
Bin Yang, a professor of biological systems engineering at Washington State University Tri‑Cities, has been selected for the Fulbright Distinguished Chair Award — the most prestigious appointment in the Fulbright Scholar Program.
Fulbright currently awards approximately 8,000 grants annually. Of those, 40 are selected for the Fulbright Distinguished Chair Award. Yang marks the first professor in WSU history to be selected for the Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Energy and Sustainable Use of Natural Resources Award.
Three Biological Systems Engineering Students in the Bioenergy & Bioproducts Engineering specialty area have been selected for the 2018 PNNL-WSU Distinguished Graduate Research Program. The students are listed below and are advised by BSE professor Bin Yang.
1. Zhangyang Xu, 2018 PNNL-WSU Distinguished Graduate Research Program (Co-advisor: Dr. John Cort)
2. Xiaolu Li, 2018 PNNL-WSU Distinguished Graduate Research Program (Co-advisor: Dr. Weijun Qian)
3. Fnu Fitria, 2018 PNNL-WSU Distinguished Graduate Research Program (Co-advisor: Dr. Jian Liu)
September 7, 2018 | Richland, WA | By Maegan Murray, WSU Tri-Cities
RICHLAND, Wash. – High school students in the Tri-Cities have seen success not only at the state level in science fairs, but also at national and international competitions after collaborating with researchers at Washington State University Tri-Cities for their research projects.
The goal of the partnerships, the professors said, is not only to provide students with exposure to a variety of science and engineering projects that can stand to have large impacts, but additionally so that more students will receive exposure to hands-on opportunities in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. With this experience, the students can witness what is possible through those career paths, they said.