People have resorted to use burning wood or other biomass for heat instead of using fossil fuels.


Photo credit: AZO Cleantech


Scientists Find Greener Way to Generate Heat using Biomass

Written by AZoCleantech

Woodstoves and campfires have long been used to warm people up in cold weather. Recently, people have resorted to use burning wood or other biomass for heat instead of using fossil fuels.

Scientists have recently reported a greener technique to generate heat using biomass. Instead of burning biomass, researchers allowed fungi to break them down to discharge heat. This research wok has been published in the journal ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering.

One of the main advantages of using biomass is that it comprises of animal waste and plant materials that are abundantly available. It is produced in large quantities as a waste product from agricultural and paper industries. Since burning biomass emits volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other fine particles that lead to environmental and health problems, scientists have been trying to find techniques to utilize biomass with minimal emission levels.

One technique involves addition of microorganisms that possess the ability to degrade the materials. In this technique, heat is discharged without emitting fine particles or VOCs. Until today, almost all of the investigations into this method were conducted in room-temperature conditions.

Read the full article: AZO Cleantech

Author: Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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