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Renewable

bioplastic knives, forks, and spoons
Winter 2021

Plant plastics

Why make plastic from petroleum and fossil fuels when they can be made from plants and bio-based materials?

Plastic waste remains a huge problem, one that WSU researchers are working on, but other research across the country looks at alternatives to fossil fuel-based plastics.

WSU collaborates with Iowa State University on the Center for Bioplastics and Biocomposites (CB2) on developing high-value biobased products from agricultural and forestry feedstocks. The WSU Composite Materials and Engineering Center provides expertise in renewable resources to develop those novel bio-based polymers, chemicals, and composites.

The work at WSU has been underway for a … » More …

More energy
Winter 2012

More energy (and other stuff) from wood

Few materials have been as kind to civilization as wood.

It made possible some of our most revolutionary technologies: the spear, fire, the wheel, the house, the ship. Hunting, cooking, shelter, transportation, all got big assists because wood was abundant, changeable, sturdy, and packed with energy.

WSU researchers are now trying to wring a whole new suite of uses from wood, including jet fuel and alternatives to other petroleum-based products. They have millions of tons of raw material at their disposal in logging residues across the Northwest. Leading the Northwest Advanced Renewables Alliance, a consortium of universities, government labs, and industry, they have $40 … » More …

Renewable Energy from Wind

Nine Canyon Wind Project near Kennewick Photos by Zach Mazur

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The WSU Energy Program has a leadership role in the Washington Wind Working Group, a coordinated effort to plan for large wind systems in Washington state. This participation is integral in determining the industry’s future.

One of the program’s specific tasks is in the development of detailed wind maps for the region. This effort, known as The Northwestern U.S. Wind Mapping Project, updates data and mapping methods to accurately reflect the … » More …