Wake Forest faculty and researchers have developed a highly efficient, solid acid catalyst that can be used to convert inexpensive waste oil into liquid fuel energy for cars, trucks, agricultural machinery, electrical generators, and for bioheat. CEES affiliates are collaborating to generate a performance study and to explore commercialization of this novel technology.

In addition, CEES is currently supporting the effort to develop a “Seed-To-Seed” or S2 model using the catalyst as a vehicle. CEES has funded a farmer in Yadkin county to produce canola seed which will be pressed to generate food quality canola oil to be leased to the Wake Forest dining services. The cake from the seed will be given to local farmers to be used as a feed supplement for their livestock.The oil, once used, will be collected and processed by students in the newly established WSFC Career Center biodiesel processing facility. The recovered oil will be then be treated and returned to the farmer to be used to power farm equipment. A detailed description of S2 can be found here.

Faculty and researchers involved with developing this catalyst include Wake Forest Professor Dr. Abdessadek Lachgar, CEES Affiliate Marcus Wright, former CEES postdoc Dave Lutz and Harvard researcher Mike Long.