Work is almost complete on a makeover of the biodiesel plant at the Iowa State University Iowa Energy Center in Nevada. The center is a teaching and research facility for alternative fuels and manager Norm Olson says the upgrade will improve they way they make bio-diesel fuel. He says they’re adding almost every component you’d find in a full-size biodiesel plant. Olson says they’ll now be able to run the plant continuously instead of making one batch of bio-diesel at a time. Olson says one thing they’re looking at turning animal parts and waste grease into the fuel. He says the animal parts are becoming more available now that their use in feed has been linked to Mad Cow disease.He says they’re scaling back on that type of animal feed, and they have to have a use for the parts. He says this is actually helpful as it deactivates the rogue protein that causes the Mad Cow disease when it goes through the bio-diesel process. Olson says bio-diesel has some advantages over regular diesel fuel that’s burned in trucks and buses. He says it’s better on the engine because it lubricates the engines better. He says it also burns cleaner and eliminates the big clouds of black smoke you see from regular diesel engines. Olson says they’ve got an agreement with a company to sell the bio-diesel created at the plant. He says they hope to be producing the fuel full time by the end of this month.
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