Biotech may come to the rescue when it comes to meeting future demand for corn needed for both food and ethanol. According to a study released by the National Center for Food and Agricultural Policy, U.S. farmers gained an additional 8.3 billion pounds of yield in 2005 due to biotech crops, including an extra 7.6 billion pounds of corn. This represents a 29 percent increase over 2004's harvest. The report notes that plant biotechnology boosted corn production by 39 billion pounds since it was introduced in the late 90s. That represents 1.9 billion gallons of ethanol.
Researchers have been working on a number of alternative chemistries to lithium-ion for next-gen batteries, silicon-air among them. However, while the technology has been viewed as promising and cost-effective, to date researchers haven’t managed to develop a battery of this chemistry with a viable running time -- until now.
Norway-based additive manufacturing company Norsk Titanium is building what it says is the first industrial-scale 3D printing plant in the world for making aerospace-grade metal components. The New York state plant will produce 400 metric tons each year of aerospace-grade, structural titanium parts.
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