The Ethanol Papers - Paperturn manuscript - Flipbook - Page 211
Reply from MARC:
Thank you, and I hope your grammar and spelling lessons go well.
July 16, 2015
Posted by LIBERTY AND JUSTICE:
If energy content is not relevant, let's consider a "zero BTU" fuel like water. Can
you make an optimized ICE that runs on water and gets the same miles per $
or miles per gallon or whatever metric you choose? What about something inbetween a hydrocarbon and ethanol, maybe a carbohydrate. Can you make an
equally efficient optimized ICE that runs directly on corn waste or pyrolysis oil?
Useful energy out = energy content * efficiency of converting energy content to
If you have less energy content, you would have to have a greater efficiency in
order to get the same useful energy out (which is proportional to things like
"miles"). Is there a reason that ethanol would make it easier to develop an engine *more* efficient than (equal-cost to be fair) gasoline or diesel engines?
Reply from MARC:
Hi LJ - You're asking some questions that I can't answer for two reasons: First,
I'm not a chemical or mechanical engineer. Second, I don't know if what you're
asking even makes sense to ask.
However, I think you're trying to compare apples and hammers (I use hammers
instead of the proverbial oranges because the comparison is far greater than
just comparing two different fruits).
Water, in its normal liquid state, can't by definition be used as a fuel for an
internal combustion engine: it is not combustible. On the other hand, if you use
the water to create hydrogen, the hydrogen could be used as a fuel in an ICE.
Unfortunately, with the exception of BMW no other automakers seemed to be
interested in building hydrogen-powered ICE vehicles, and so this possibility