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Creating Biojet Fuel

NARA’s 2014 Cumulative Report is available online

Webpage for NARA's 2nd Cumulative report
Webpage for NARA’s 2nd Cumulative report

NARA’s second Cumulative Report is now available online. This report describes research efforts and activities conducted between April 2013 through March 2014.

You can view the NARA Cumulative Report: April 2013-March 2014 here.

Progress reports are sectioned within the Project’s five goals: Sustainable Biojet, Value Lignin Co-Products, Rural Economic …more

Finding ways to improve cellulase activity

 

Illustration of cellulase enzyme on cellulose. Courtesy of Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Illustration of cellulase enzyme on cellulose. Courtesy of Oak Ridge National Laboratory

 

 

 

NARA investigates conversion technologies that rely on enzymes called cellulases. Cellulases break down the cellulose and hemicellulose polymers found in wood and release simple sugars. The simple sugars can then be used to make isobutanol …more

Screening Douglas-fir trees for production of biofuels and other valuable chemicals

Douglas-fir core samples used to determine recalcitrance variability.
Douglas-fir core samples used to determine recalcitrance variability.

Douglas-fir trees are not all alike. Some grow faster, some adapt better to harsher climates and they all differ somewhat in their chemical makeup. These distinctions are due to variations in their genetic makeup. Those interested in breeding plantation trees for timber value have capitalized on genetic variation …more

NARA selects a single pretreatment method

Simplified cartoon of the mild bisulfite pretreatment process
Simplified cartoon of the mild bisulfite pretreatment process

When NARA was initiated in the Fall 2011, it was tasked to evaluate available pretreatment methods and ultimately select one as a NARA-preferred method to incorporate into a wood to bio-jet fuel conversion process. Pretreatment is the process that breaks up the wood fibers so that enzymes can access …more

Forest residues, machines and soil: how do they mix?

Photo courtesy of Ponsse
Photo courtesy of Ponsse

Transporting the forest residues located in slash piles out of the woods requires vehicles and equipment to roll and vibrate over bare ground.  This activity can cause soil compaction and disturbance, which can lead to adverse soil erosion and limit plant growth.

Numerous studies and harvesting policies have been initiated to lessen the impact of soil compaction …more

Estimating Biomass Availability: Dr. Kevin Boston

Slash pile. Photo curteousy of John Sessions
Slash pile. Photo curteousy of John Sessions

Story written by Jenna Loeppky:  M.F. candidate and graduate research assistant in the Department of Forest Engineering, Resource Management at Oregon State University

Researchers, such as Oregon State University Professor and NARA investigator Dr. Kevin Boston, are asking questions concerning …more

Smart tools to measure slash pile volumes

slash pile copy

A woodland owner has a choice of time tested measuring techniques to predict how much lumber can be produced from trees. Accurate volume estimates can help forest managers plan for the number and type of trees to harvest and the appropriate workforce and equipment needed.

NARA provides technical assistance to an emerging industry that, instead of using the bole wood (trunk) for lumber, uses the wood residuals …more