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Robert C. Brown, left, explains new pyrolysis technology to Karen Fletcher, leader of the RAPID Institute for manufacturing; and Mark Gaalswyk, leader of Easy Energy Systems in Emmetsburg; during a recent tour of the BioCentury Research Farm. Photo by Christopher Gannon.

Robert C. Brown, left, explains new pyrolysis technology to Karen Fletcher, leader of the RAPID Institute for manufacturing; and Mark Gaalswyk, leader of Easy Energy Systems in Emmetsburg; during a recent tour of the BioCentury Research Farm. Photo by Christopher Gannon.

BioCentury Research Farm Update

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Iowa State to manage biorefinery projects for new Manufacturing USA Institute

Iowa State University will lead the biorefinery program of the country's 10th Manufacturing USA Institute. The new institute will be known as RAPID, the Rapid Advancement in Process Intensification Deployment Institute, and will be dedicated to improving the productivity and efficiency of chemical manufacturing. The U.S. Department of Energy will support the institute with $70 million over five years, subject to federal appropriations. Another $70 million is expected from the institute's partners. Read more.

Brown moves up to 44th in Top 100 in bioeconomy listing

BCRF affiliate Robert C. Brown, BEI director and an Anson Marston Distinguished Professor in Engineering and the Gary and Donna Hoover Chair in Mechanical Engineering, is tied for number 44 in the “Top 100 People in the Advanced Bioeconomy” for 2017, as nominated and voted by the readers of The Biofuels Digest and the publication’s editorial board. Read more.

Brown and Williams awarded patent

BCRF affiliates Brown and R. Christopher Williams, professor in civil, construction, and environmental engineering, and Mohamed Abdel Raouf Mohamed Metwally of Cairo, Egypt, were inventors on U.S. Patent No. 9,546,276 entitled “Bio-oil Formulation as an Asphalt Substitute.” The patent was issued on Jan. 17, 2017.

Student employees recognized at Student Employee of the Year ceremony

Two BCRF student employees were nominated for the 2017 Iowa State University Student Employee of the Year award. Ben Link, a senior in agricultural systems technology, and Ryan Werner, a junior in industrial technology, along with 91 student employees, were recognized at a ceremony held Feb. 13. Link was one of three runner ups and was presented with a "Students of Distinction" award. Link started working at the BCRF in September 2014, and assists with research projects and installs, maintains, and repairs many different pieces of equipment. He has provided assistance to multiple Iowa State projects including the Long-term Assessment of Miscanthus Productivity and Sustainability (LAMPS) and a CenUSA project administered by the Bioeconomy Institute. Werner started at the BCRF in August 2015, and assists with research projects and the repair and maintenance of vehicles and equipment.

Visitors tour BCRF

The BCRF had the following visitors: ISG; Riley Resource Group; Roque Evangelista, USDA Agriculture Research Service; and Wanli Xu, Institute of Soil Fertilizer and Water Conservation.

BCRF manager Andy Suby (left) and BCRF student employee Ben Link. Link was recognized as a Student of Distinction at the Iowa State University Student Employee of the Year ceremony.

BCRF manager Andy Suby (left) and BCRF student employee Ben Link. Link was recognized as a Student of Distinction at the Iowa State University Student Employee of the Year ceremony.