Researchers using math to boost wheat straw use for ethanol

(AP Photo/Orlin Wagner, File)

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) – Researchers in Kansas and China are using mathematical modeling to improve the process of converting wheat straw into pellets for the production of ethanol.

Wheat straw, the plant residue left after wheat harvest, is abundant in Kansas. The straw has low commercial value, but one use for it is fuel production.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reported researchers in Kansas and China are using mathematical modeling to improve the process of converting wheat straw into pellets for the production of ethanol.

Pellets can be more easily handled and transported to ethanol processing plants, where ethanol extracted from them can be substituted for fossil fuels.

Mathematical modeling can save both time and resources required for experimental studies.

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