Ethanol - good or bad - Page 4 - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #31 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-04-2007, 08:43 AM
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your experiences from the E10 fuel deviates from what is generally seen and agreed upon. The ethanol contains extra oxygen, that will be freed during combustion. In low mixing ratios, that more than compensates for the lower energy contens in the alcohol. This is ONE thing that I can conclude after mixing E85 and gasoline for 1,5 years.

Reliability: I have references that have used ethanol fuel for over 10 years and over 200 000 km, which I find to be "time enough".
And of cource you can't know, but due to fuel shortages in WW2, "bentyl" was used in Europe for cars. It was basically E25!
And Brazil is a good example, don't you think? A whole country for decades?

And you are right about us not being able to produce enough E85 at this time. It is however likely, that we in the not-so-distant future can not produce/refine enough petroleum oil either...

A car run on E85 instead will not autmatically produce more toxic emissions. There can be a higher content of HC before the cat "heats up", but they are simpler and less harmful than from gasoline, and dissipates quicker in nature.

On acid rain. This was a major problem for instance in Germany (the Ruhr area springs to mind), but at the time it was discovered, no European country had cathalytic convertors on the cars. Sweden was one of the first, and here it became mandatory in -89. Since then, most of the cars has been replaced with newer cars with this type of emission control, that reduces NOx by 90% or so.
There are also other contributing factors here, where the former East blocks industry is a big one.

I have not myself chosen to call the greenhouse gasses the major issue, the scientific experts agree on human impact on climat. You will of course find some scientists that NOT agree - but you can also still find people that think Darwin was not right.

I do not fully follow your line regarding Sweden and subsidizing (?), but nevertheless: In general western countries import oil from countries that have dictatorship, non democracy, war, lack of human rights, poverty etc. etc.
Many of these countries have exported billilon and billions worth of oil for decades, and still have not managed to create the fundamental conditions for their citizens.

If you produce ethanol on american farms, the farmers will probably use this money, and the money circulates in the american society. Those money will not STAY at the farm, or?

Other stuff than corn can be made for ethanol production (I thought everybody knew this ); potatoes, barley and many other types of biomass.

And even though US is big, it's still shorter from Seattle to Kansas, than to Saudi.

I don't think you got my point on the transports. Today we burn diesel and heavy fuel to transport oil halfway around the world. We COULD use ethanol to transport ethanol within the region or country. There is a difference.

/Alexander from Sweden

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post #32 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-04-2007, 08:56 AM Thread Starter
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Talking Solvents and solutes

Originally Posted by rsmith
Ethanol is bad bad bad!!!!!!!!! Just ask anyone with a boat It eats fuel tanks rubber parts and anything else that can be disolved by it....
This is a good point as well. We have to remember the solvent/solute principle: Every solute has it's own solvent - e.g. salt dissolves in water (both polar) and similarly, non-polar solvents dissolve non-polar solutes (the vast majority of organic carbon-containing compounds).

So, are the softer parts of our engines (gaskets, seals, O-rings, etc.) harmed more by polar, or non-polar solvents? Hopefully, there are some chemists on here who can elaborate on this.

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post #33 of 33 (permalink) Old 01-04-2007, 09:59 AM
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A quick google search finds that my experience does not deviate from what's agreed on. There are other ways to oxygenate gas than ethanol, like MTBE. Maybe compared to unoxygenated gas E10 gets similar mpg, but compared to MTBE oxygenated gas it gets worse.

If we agree that ethanol does not have long term viability, why not spend the money we spend on subsidizing ethanol on researching a solution that could be viable, like hydrogen?

I'm not talking about E85 emissions, I'm talking about E10 emissions. Toyota did their tests on cars with catalytic convertors and found significant increases in NOx emissions (also, you have yet to address evaporative emissions).

The US gets much of it's oil from itself, Canada, and Mexico, which use pipelines. Also, when we buy oil we pay the cost of buying oil (actually, much of the oil we get is from US based oil companies that pay a small price for access to the oil (typically around $5/barrel), then pull it and refine it and sell it at the much higher market rate (which is the rate you always hear about in the news), but when we subsidies there are deadweight losses. Granted subsidies are not as wasteful as tariffs, but they do waste.

Yes, I know other stuff can make ethanol, but it's easier to just speak in general terms. All farms used in ethanol production receive subsidies on top of standard farm subsidies, is that better?

If you want the entire US trucking industry to switch to another fuel source, good luck. Many truckers own their own trucks, and they can't afford to buy new ones to switch fuel sources, nor do they care to.

Yeah sure fine offer E85 and flex fuel cars, but why force E10 on people?
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