Photos: How ORNL turns leaves into biofuel
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A lot goes into the process of turning plant materials into fuel. Here’s a look at Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s work in biofuels.
This is a close-up of a Populus deltoides leaf. Chloroplasts in the leaves have chlorophyll which captures and converts CO2 during the photosynthesis process.
These processed Populus deltoides samples help researchers determine which genetic lines are best for fuel production. In the background are live Populus seedlings.
This is the ORNL Plant Science lab. According to the department’s website, each greenhouse has 1500 sq feet of floor space and 675 sq feet of bench space.
Graduate student Alina Campbell tends to these Eastern Cottonwoods by removing damaged leaves.
The fermentation process helps produce the ethanol, which is used in biofuels.
Algae is being investigated as a potential base for biodiesel.
Another look at fermentation
Kelsey Yee controls the Applikon fermenters to determine the performance of a specific microorganism.
The ethanol compatibility test chamber
This test chamber tests the compatibility of materials such as metals and polymers with ethanol fuel blends.
Brock Carter labels various Populus trichocarpa samples based on their genotype.
Postdoctoral researcher Anthony Bryan takes a look at some Arabidopsis in the BioEnergy Science Center at ORNL.