new ethanol studies

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I found this quite interesting if it is good research.
Gasoline Research findings released last week strongly suggests that there is an "optimal blend level" of ethanol and gasoline -- most likely E20 or E30
(20 or 30% ethanol) -- at which cars will provide better mileage than the fuel's per-gallon btu content would predict.
The new study, cosponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and the American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE), shows mid-range ethanol blends -- fuel mixtures with more ethanol than E10 (10% ethanol) but less than E85 (85% ethanol) -- can in some cases provide better fuel economy than regular unleaded gasoline, even in standard, non-flex-fuel vehicles. The new study also found that mid-range ethanol blends reduce harmful tailpipe emissions and that vehicles without any adjustments can operate well on higher ethanol blends than previously thought.
Previous assumptions held that ethanol's lower energy content should always directly correlate with lower fuel economy for drivers. Those assumptions were found to be wrong
"Initial findings indicate that we as a nation haven't begun to recognize the value of ethanol," says Brian Jennings, ACE executive vice president. "This is a compelling argument for more research on the promise of higher ethanol blends in gasoline. There is strong evidence that the optimal ethanol-gasoline blend for standard, non-flex-fuel vehicles is greater than E10 and instead may be E20 or E30. We encourage the federal government to move swiftly to research the use of higher ethanol blends and make necessary approvals so that American motorists can have the cost-effective ethanol choices they deserve at the pump."
The University of North Dakota Energy & Environmental Research Center (EERC) and the Minnesota Center for Automotive Research (MnCAR) conducted the research using four 2007 model vehicles: a Toyota Camry, a Ford Fusion and two Chevrolet Impalas, one flex-fuel and one non-flex-fuel. Researchers used the EPA Highway Fuel Economy Test (HWFET) to examine a range of ethanol-gasoline blends from straight Tier 2 gasoline up to 85% ethanol. All of the vehicles got better mileage with ethanol blends than the ethanol's energy content would predict, and three out of four actually traveled farther on a mid-level ethanol blend than on unleaded gasoline.
The research provides strong evidence that standard, non-flex-fuel vehicles can operate on ethanol blends beyond 10%. The three non-flex- fuel vehicles tested operated on levels as high as E65 before any engine fault codes were displayed. Emissions results for the ethanol blends were also favorable for nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and non-methane organic gases, showing an especially significant reduction in CO2 emissions for each vehicle's "optimal" ethanol blend (E20 for the flex- fuel Chevy, E30 for the Toyota and Ford, E40 for the non-flex Chevy).
"These studies show that moderate 20-30% ethanol blends can reduce air pollution, improve gas mileage and save drivers money in the most popular cars on the road today," says Brett Hulsey, president of Better Environmental Solutions, an environmental health consulting firm. "Moderate ethanol blends are homegrown in America, can be delivered with existing pumps to current vehicles and cost less than gasoline. Ethanol lowers CO2 emissions 20% from gasoline, making it one of our most effective greenhouse-gas-reduction programs currently in place."
For more information on the key findings of the study or to download the full report, click here: www.ethanol.org/news.
KB
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Note that it is the product of some group promoting ethanol. The stuff has less energy than gasoline, period. They can do all the studies they want. Chemistry doesn't change to suit the guys pushing ethanol.
I do feel it has a place as fuel, but trying to convince people that some magical mix will give better mileage than gas? Not friggin likely.
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Scott wrote:

Apparently, the Department of Energy was involved. So it *should* be an accurate report. It is in the interest of the people who paid for the report (that's US taxpayers) to get accurate information from the studies. However, unfortunately, the agenda of people who run the gov't sometimes get in the way of truth. It's very rare with George W. Bush, but it does happen.
However, it doesn't make sense that something with less energy would do more work. So it is highly suspect, at least.

Chemistry doesn't lie. Although I have no idea how, there might be something about the chemistry of ethanol and gasoline more efficient with 20 or 30% ethanol. I highly doubt it, though.

The thought that comes to mind is why are *we* (that is, the US taxpayer) paying for this crappy type of report.
Jeff
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wrote:

You ned to read the report carefully.
It says it will produce more power than the combination would indicate - not better than Gasoline. If 20% ethanol is added to fuel, and ethanol has half the energy density of gasoline, we would expect to see a 10% decrease. The report says we MAY only see a decrease of 9.5% (that would make the report true if that were the case)
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clare at snyder.on.ca wrote:

Take a look at figure ES1 here: <http://www.ethanol.org/pdf/contentmgmt/ACE_Optimal_Ethanol_Blend_Level_Study_final_12507.pdf .
A flex-fuel Chevrolet Impala actually got 15% higher fuel mileage with E20 than with regular gasoline. However, a regular fuel (i.e., non-flex fuel) Impala got less mileage with E20. AFAIK, there is nothing that is that different between a flex fuel and regular car that would explain this. My understanding, is the flex fuel vehicles use rubber that won't be damaged by ethanol. However, there is nothing drastically different that would explain the differences in fuel mileage.
Personally, I don't trust the data. I have a feeling that this is just honest error in measuring the fuel mileage.
What would be better would be blinded tests (the people doing the driving don't know type of fuel is in the tank). These tests are far from definitive.
Jeff
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wrote:

FLEX fuel has a wider adaptive timing capability which allows the engine to better adapt to the higher octane and certain other characteristics of the "bug juice" allowing the engine to run more efficiently

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clare at snyder.on.ca wrote:
<...>

That doesn't explain why a car would burn E20 or E30 so much more efficiently than when burning E0.
Jeff
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What makes you think not??? being able to advance timeing to optimum is very much a factor in getting the most milage from any fuel. The more the ethanol blend the more octain then, if the comp.ratio is high enough, the more efficient the burn up to the point the lower BTUs in ethanol start reducing the total output potential. KB
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Kevin Bottorff wrote:

Yet you're making the assumption that the timing is not near optimum with E0 (regular gasoline). In addition, only one concentration of ethanol showed such an increase in performance, and for only one vehicle. I suspect that this is just error in the measurement of the fuel mileage, and not an accurate value.

And that point comes at about 1% (or less) ethanol and the output potential (per gallon of fuel) goes down as the ethanol concentration goes up.
Jeff
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is
The same people that sold the public on the idea that tap-water packaged in a plastic container for a buck a bottle is better than tap-water that comes out of the faucet when you turn the handle, are now working on selling the public that a lower BTU fuel has more energy than a higher BTU fuel.
I think they will do quite well if bottled water sales are any indication of the intelligence of the average American.
Ted

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Sounds like the Acetone boys.
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The research is not reviewed by objective science and is obviously biased against bicycles. Ethanol.org admits it refuses to include the harmful effects of corn production, arguing it would be produced anyway. If you burn it for fuel you can't use it as food ok?
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What harmful effects?
Corn is one of those crops that once the fermentation process is complete and the ethanol has been extracted, everything that is in the ethanol came from the atmosphere - and if the mash left over is plowed back into the field, everything that came from the ground is put back into the ground.
The reason that normal corn production requires so much fertilization is that the products - the corn kernels - that are sold as feed, they carry away all of the stuff that the fertilizer put into the soil. But if your growing it for ethanol and correctly processing it, there is nothing that is lost from the soil.
Granted there are higher yields from switchgrass and more esoteric conversion processes - but a lot more farmers know how to grow corn already.
Yes, you do lose corn as a food if you convert it into ethanol. But there are millions of acres in the US (at least) that are currently NOT farmed at all and could be brought into food production. Further, most corn ends up going into the production of HFCS (High Fructose Corn Syrup) where it ends up being used as the main ingredient in a huge amount of food that is nothing more than empty calories, and is currently contributing to the obesity epidemic in the US. Would it really hurt us if the cost of Twinkies, soda pop, and sugar-frosted-corn-pops doubled in price?
If you could buy Ethanol for less money than gasoline, to where the cost to the consumer per mile would be the same regardless of either fuel used, there would be little objection to using it.
Ted
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Because it is not limited to those, there is already a shortage of basic food stuffs such as tortillas.
http://venturebeat.com/2007/01/15/ethanol-use-causing-corn-shortages-spiking-price-price-of-tortillas / http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/01/26/AR2007012601896_pf.html http://www.autobloggreen.com/2006/05/29/world-to-suffer-corn-shortage-as-ethanol-demand-increases /

Without the subsidies, ethanol can't compete with gasoline...
http://www.dentalplans.com/Dental-Health-Articles/Looking-At-Ethanol-As-An-Energy-Source.asp http://robertrapier.wordpress.com/category/ethanol-prices / http://www.becker-posner-blog.com/archives/2007/10/food_prices_and.html

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Really? I just got back from the store and there were plenty on the shelf. Perhaps instead you meant the price has gone up?
Maybe we should let the price fall to below the cost or production like it had been for years. Once the weaker farms go out of business and the supply falls then we would be right back to where we are now, except with a lot of pain for those involved in production.
Whether or not we divert some corn to ethanol or not the price of corn will end up where it is now because - currently at least - we have surplus growing capacity in the US. If you want to help go do a rain dance in Australia so they can get there fields producing again.
Calvin
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On Wed, 19 Dec 2007 08:39:30 -0800 (PST), Calvin

Try to buy tortillas on a working man's salary in central America - or Mealie on an average person's wages in Zimbabwe.
If the USA thinks they have problems with the "outside world" because of oil, wait untill the rest of the world is HUNGRY because the US is sucking up all the corn to make ethanol.
You have not seen trouble yet!!!!!! Iraq, Iran and Al Queda are NOTHING.
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Which have nothing to do with regular field corn. so the shortage has nothing to do with ethanol.

I believe you ment to say with out the country wide subisidies of gasoline that are not direct payments gasoline would be closer to 10 bucks a gallon. So ethanol is more than compeditive with the actual total cost of gasoline. KB

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Pardon? You think the rest of the world lives on sweet corn? You are NUTS

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clare at snyder.on.ca wrote in news:pb1jm3p77e7detj66185s0vkoffjsl6mgj@ 4ax.com:

You realize most tortillas are made from blue corn grown in there own country. which is now not being grown because some other crop is more profitable now. There own Gov. is not helping them at all. So don`t bother pulling the comunist line on me. I am not falling for the US is the bad guy routine. I know better. I am sorry that there are others in the world that can not afford food but much of the time it is there own Gov. fault. IF I can use a fuel that helps keep the nut jobs selling oil from making any more money to use againt us and it will not harm us here. I am all for it. I am not a Socialist, I don`t need to feed a world that won`t help itself and also wants to do myself and family and friends harm. No kumbuya moment here. The US does more for the rest of the world than the rest of the world put together. I have no reason to feel guilty!!!!!!!! KB
very little reg field corn is used for food products, other than corn flakes or sweetner for direct consumption. Most of the US corn is fed to anminals for our secondary consumption

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On Thu, 20 Dec 2007 17:35:21 +0000 (UTC), Kevin Bottorff

I'm not a socialist either. Far from it. Not pulling any "Communist Line" on you either. Unlike you, I've lived and worked in some of these countries.
As for the US doing more for the rest of the world than the rest of the world put together, if you "digested" that Bovine Excrement the resulting Methane would solve America's energy problem.

Which is almost as wastefull and stupid a proposition as using it to make Ethanol.
Corn fed beef is the biggest contributor to E-Coli poisoning. Corn in the gut of a Bovine beast is the perfect environment for E-Coli. Grass fed and grain finished beef is almost completely E-Coli free.
America's dependence on "Big Corn" and "Big Oil" WILL be her downfall.

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