Can e85 be mixed with regular gasoline?

Can e85 be mixed with regular gasoline?

This question is asked very often. Since e85 is already a mixture of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline, it is just fine to mix the two fuels.

Let’s say that you fill up with e85 before a trip then continue to your destination. When you are ready to leave, you notice there are no e85 stations around. You have less then half a tank left of e85, and you need to fill up. Filling up your tank with regular gas is just fine for your flex fuel vehicle.

Filling up will regular gas will only dilute the e85 ethanol from the original fill up. With a rough calculation, if you have half a tank of e85 and fill up with regular gas, you will have approximately 40 percent ethanol and 60 percent gasoline in your tank.

If your vehicle is a flex fuel vehicle, it will be able to take any combination of e85 and gasoline.

Converting to ethanol in Australia

Much like in America, ethanol is also booming down under in Australia. According to Tony Kelly, the New South Wales Minister for Regional Development, service stations have been converting vehicles and gas stations as fast as they could.

The only problem is that the employees that complete the ethanol conversions are falling behind due to the very high demand.

The Australian Government has been giving many companies resources to convert their infrastructure from petroleum to ethanol however the resources are set to expire in October of 2007.

The New South Wales Government is asking the Commonwealth to extend the ethanol distribution program for another four years, well past the deadline of October.

Last year, Australia announced plans to provide resources to fuel stations to upgrade their fuel tanks in order for the tanks to carry ethanol along with gasoline.

Originally, the ethanol distribution program was to run for only one year. Tony Kelly says the twelve month time frame is far from enough to upgrade. With public interest and awareness at its peak, now is not the time for pulling the plug on the bio-fuel industry.

Follow this link for more information on converting to ethanol.

Other sources of Ethanol

Universities and businesses in Michigan are preparing for a future that will be powered by plants, and not petroleum. Bruce Dale is adding his voice to the many more that are calling for more ethanol and less petroleum for trucks, cars, and SUVs.

But while the current focus for ethanol vehicles tends to be corn based fuels, Bruce sees a solution with many other plants as well.

Dale is a Michigan State University professor who is conducting research for turning other plant materials into fuel. He was also one of the presenters at the US BioEnergy Corporation corn ethanol plant in Woodbury that was focused on alternative fuel.

According to Dale, the age of oil is ending. Dale is a professor of chemical engineering and materials science at Michigan State University. He wonders what we can do about our dependence on foreign oil.

Fossil-based petroleum fuel products account for 97 percent of the fuel needed for cars and trucks, Dale said.

According to Dale, America literally stops without oil.

Dale sees a resolution for the trouble. Switching from oil based products such as petrol and diesel to ethanol would cut the need for oil, produce less hydrocarbon emissions and might have the United States less reliant on oil-rich areas such as the Middle East.

But maize only won’t offer that vitality, Dale said.

Dale has worked for over 30 years to discover more cost effective ways to develop ethanol made from other new substances – commonly known as cellulosic ethanol. Sources for that sort of fuel can include rice husks, wheat straw and saw debris – things that had been considered waste.

A few years ago, it cost as more as $1.40 a gallon to develop cellulosic ethanol. But improvements in engineering could take the cost downward to about 60 cents a gallon in another 15 to 20 years.

According to Dale, ethanol could be sold for between $1.50 to $1.70 a gallon at the pump.

The Minnesota based US BioEnergy plans to increase its capacity from 300 million gallons to 1 billion gallons a year by the year 2009.

US BioEnergy has four ethanol plants and is currently building three more, says Kim Mitchell, the vice president of engineering for US BioEnergy.