Author Topic: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic  (Read 1041 times)

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Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« on: January 08, 2019, 02:46:54 AM »

Tom

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2019, 08:11:44 AM »
Hope he can do what he says he can. Does look promising. 

TallDude

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2019, 10:23:47 AM »
We need people who think out of the box to find what's not in it. I think he is very 'Einsteinian'..... No degree required. Just brains. Just what the world needs right now.

Sup-position

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2019, 11:04:04 AM »
It certainly checks a lot of boxes.
This is good stuff.
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Bean

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2019, 11:33:16 AM »
Per Marshall Medoff,

"...all to be produced in a 21st century sustainable industrial revolution"

Music to my ears.

Weasels wake

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2019, 11:33:58 AM »
Was this on this last Sunday night along with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez?
If so (I don't watch that show anymore) what a juxtaposition of intelligence!  Holy crap! 
It takes a quiver to do that.

seadart

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2019, 12:34:21 PM »
Calm down,  60 minutes needed to do some peer review of the claims about novelty and lack of succes of other methods.

Science reporting in the modern world absolutely sucks. 

 

TallDude

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2019, 12:50:46 PM »
Calm down,  60 minutes needed to do some peer review of the claims about novelty and lack of succes of other methods.

Science reporting in the modern world absolutely sucks.
I see your point, but they did mention (though sort of offhandedly) that other more universally accepted scientific methods or trains of thought were more costly and less efficient. No real numbers, other than 1/3 of the fuel market.   

Bean

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2019, 03:37:29 PM »
Calm down,  60 minutes needed to do some peer review of the claims about novelty and lack of succes of other methods.

Science reporting in the modern world absolutely sucks.

Yes, but reporting has always been this way, perhaps even worse.  There is actually more transparency now, but tempered with less “perceived” credibility.


hbsteve

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2019, 04:51:04 PM »
60 minutes presents the story they want you to hear.
A few years ago I was involved with an organization they went after.  They interviewed kids from the school.  Then said that no officials
were available to be interviewed.  Truth was that officials drove the kids to the interview and asked to be interviewed themselves.
60 minutes is an entertainment show not a news program.

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #10 on: January 09, 2019, 03:14:27 AM »
Calm down,  60 minutes needed to do some peer review of the claims about novelty and lack of succes of other methods.

Peer review about novelty?  He has the patents.
Peer review about lack of success of other methods?  If others have processes that work and that don't infringe, bring those methods to market.

This story was an introduction to a process and a reportedly successful bid to answer a scientific problem (extracting sugar from cellulose) that most of us (all?) were unaware existed prior to the story. 

seadart

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #11 on: January 09, 2019, 08:38:19 AM »
Most people who passed high school biology know cellulose is a polysacharide that is broken down by digestive systems in lots of organisms, but not people. Not being aware of biomass/biofuels research is more a sympton of the current age of people who think they know "technology", but just know web aps and social media.

Sorry not meaning to offend anyone.  It's possible to have patents for processes that absolutely do not work, and for processes that are simple modifications of exisitng ideas.   I'm an inventor on ~ 35 issued patents, so the word "patent" does not make say  "ooooh  ahhhh, amazing."

My issue is with due diligence of the news reporters in looking into  other methods of extracting glucose from cellulose, fermentation and chemical methods have been known since the middle ages and earlier.  Biomass/biofuels research was a very big area until the recent hostile administration.   If you google for "extracting glucose from cellulose" you'll find enough background reading to keep you busy for a few weeks. I notice in the google list there is a review by a scientist at Stanford that is a pretty good starting place.


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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2019, 01:14:41 PM »
Most people who passed high school biology know cellulose is a polysacharide that is broken down by digestive systems in lots of organisms, but not people. Not being aware of biomass/biofuels research is more a sympton of the current age of people who think they know "technology", but just know web aps and social media.

Sorry not meaning to offend anyone.  It's possible to have patents for processes that absolutely do not work, and for processes that are simple modifications of exisitng ideas.   I'm an inventor on ~ 35 issued patents, so the word "patent" does not make say  "ooooh  ahhhh, amazing."

My issue is with due diligence of the news reporters in looking into  other methods of extracting glucose from cellulose, fermentation and chemical methods have been known since the middle ages and earlier.  Biomass/biofuels research was a very big area until the recent hostile administration.   If you google for "extracting glucose from cellulose" you'll find enough background reading to keep you busy for a few weeks. I notice in the google list there is a review by a scientist at Stanford that is a pretty good starting place.

Calm down Seadart.  Were I a chemist who had the training and resources but watched this from the sidelines, I might sound bitter too  :).


PonoBill

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #13 on: January 09, 2019, 02:43:42 PM »
The US patent office used to be a technically competent and through organization, but they went insane about 15 years ago and became highly politicized. Patents are now tools for lawyers, hence the rise of patent trolls who take questionable patents and use them for extortion rather than protection against theft of valid intellectual property.

That's an interesting story, but that's about all. Seadart--anyone expecting diligence and intelligence from a reporter of any flavor is headed for disappointment. I spent ten years explaining nuclear power to reporters. Put every other mythical claim aside, news organizations sell viewers to advertisers. That's it, that's all. I get my science news fix from reading Quanta magazine, everything else I consider bullshit unless by some random chance a reporter happens to get something right. About as likely as monkeys typing Shakespeare, but it could happen.

I'm feeling very calm. I had a turbulent but interesting and fun foil session today. My peers reviewed it and were pleased I hadn't run down anyone.
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PonoBill

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Re: Cellulose, Energy, Sugar, Plastic
« Reply #14 on: January 09, 2019, 05:51:36 PM »
I gave this some thought and I think I know what he's doing. It's a clever and interesting approach. 60 minutes sucks toads, they made it all about his lack of formal education, beating out the scientists from MIT. Such nonsense. Makes a nice story, gives it the common twist that they crave. Totally irrelevant of course.

Bashing away at the material to be digested with electrons is probably the interesting twist. When I was a junior in high school I bombarded blocks of polyethylene with electrons so I could get an idea of the power of the electron accelerator I built. Accelerating electrons is not remarkable in any way, the cathode ray tube in the TV your Mom tossed out thirty years ago not only accelerated them but also steered them very precisely--three beams if it was color--and modulated their effective amplitude. The electrons in my experiment were moving faster, and purposefully came out the end of the tube, and they polymerized the poly, making it harder. I don't recall any specifics, my project advisor (one of those lightweight scientists, a physicist at MIT) suggested the target and the evaluation process, but the plastic got harder where the beam hit it, and peeling up the layers and testing each told me how deep the beam went (not very).

I think bashing the cellulose might make it easier to process with other means. Looking at his equipment I'm reminded that the chemical factory in a single cell is not the simple, low-velocity process I used to imagine. Duplicating the function on a macro scale would require a lot of machinery, and duplicating the processing speed would require it all to be working at ridiculous rates.

Anytime I hear about something like this I always wonder about the energy balance. Transportable fuel always takes more energy to produce and transport than they directly return as usable energy. Beyond that sticky bit, changing the fuel source isn't a big solution unless the thermodynamic efficiency is somehow improved. Making fuels for internal combustion engines at the very best can only return about 30 percent of the energy consumed. That's one reason I'm somewhat convinced that transportation needs to be converted to mostly electric.
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