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University of Oklahoma engineers in collaboration with the University of Tulsa have discovered a novel approach for the water-assisted upgrading of the renewable chemical, furfural, doubling or tripling the rate of conversion.

"Energy and water are interconnected in the production of renewable fuels. On the one hand, energy is needed to extract, purify and distribute water. On the other hand, water is useful in producing energy," said Daniel Resasco, professor in the School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering, Gallogly College of Engineering. "It is known that water plays an important role as an environmentally-friendly solvent, replacing organic solvents. The novelty is that it can accelerate the rate of hydrogenation."

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Category: Science