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Turning CO into Ethanol

Very cool story in the New York Times about a Kiwi company – LanzaTech – that has secured funding here in the US to produce ethanol from an untapped source — carbon monoxide gas. Vinod Khosla had this to day:

When I passed it on to my partners for due diligence, the technology stood up to every test, and the intellectual property protection was awesome,” Mr. Khosla said.

Then, referring to the bacteria that are key to the process, he said, “The performance of the bugs was frankly mind-boggling to me, not something I would have expected from a tiny research effort in New Zealand.” He said his firm “sent the best process engineers we know to evaluate the technology and could it be industrialized, and the answer was yes.”

2 Responses

  1. By Gary Bridge on May 3rd, 2007 at 7:32 am

    Your CO2 in your headline does NOT tie to carbon monoxide sir! CO2 is greenhouse gas, the same stuff you exhale as is also created by the incomplete combustion of hydrocarbons emitted by industrial smokestacks.

    CO is the term for carbon monoxide. Something way different. It is the stuff that puts you to sleep permanently if you breathe your car exhaust.

    Please go back and review the earlier info on this company and what they hopefully can do with bugs fermenting CO, not CO2.


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