alcohol

Nicholas Landau nlandau at eden.rutgers.edu
Tue Sep 17 23:02:01 EST 1996


Ethanol can be produced very cheaply, if you have enough biomass
to ferment.  Brasil, which is a major producer of cane sugar,
operates its cars on inexpesnive ethanol.  The use of ethanol fuel
isn't feasible in most temperate countries for two reasons.  The
first is that we do not make enough fermentable biomass (we would
need to import cane.)  The second is that ethanol has a lower vapor
pressure than does gasoline, and only vaporizes effectively in the
carbourator at tropical temperatures.

I do believe that the use of ethanol in American fuel is an attempt
to control air pollution.  The Clean Air Act requires that motor
fuels contain a certain fraction of oxygen, and so ethanol is added
to get the oxygen content up to legal standards.




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