Whiskey By-Products To Fuel Cars In Future?

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A Scottish company is looking at possibilities to power cars in the future using by-products of whiskey as biofuel.

The company is working on means to explore how to turn tonnes of waste that is left behind while making whiskey and turn it into biofuel.

Celtic Renewables, has worked on a century old process of fermentation technique and taken a step towards commercial level.

Martin Tangney, the founder, president, and chief scientific officer of the Edinburgh-based firm said, "Draff and pot ale have no commercial value, and in the modern context they represent a disposal issue."

The ingredients used for making whiskey are water, yeast and a grain, primarily barley. Out of this combination, only 10 percent of the output is whiskey. The rest is just waste.

The industry, each year produces 5,00,000 metric tonnes of residual solids known as draff and 1.6 billion litres of a liquid which is called pot ale.

These by-products are usually used as manure for agriculture, processed into low-grade animal feed or even discarded into the sea.

Instead of not making use of all this to its full efficiency, Celtic Renewables is to use an old process and turn molasses and other sugars into chemicals and further work on it to convert draff and pot ale into acetone, 1-butanol and ethanol.

Chemicals like butanol and ethanol can be used as fuel. The Scottish company is taking this process to the next level with the help of the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change, Bio Base Europe and other private funds.

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Story first published: Wednesday, October 29, 2014, 11:37 [IST]
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