UI College of Engineering's Sustainability Research Featured at State Fair

Monday, August 4, 2008

The College of Engineering will demonstrate some of its remarkable efforts in energy sustainability the 2008 Iowa State Fair exhibit Thursday, August 7 through Sunday, August 17 in the Varied Industries Building on the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines.

The College and UI Power Plant will show current and future sustainability opportunities for Iowa and the university at a display Wednesday, August 12. In 2002, the UI Power Plant and Quaker Oats cereal manufacturing plant in Cedar Rapids partnered to create the UI's Biomass Fuel project as a way to cut energy costs and reduce harmful emissions by burning oat hulls.

Their exhibit will explain how oat hulls are burned for fuel and highlight research being done to improve the process and establish guidelines so municipalities can switch to renewable energy, according to UI assistant professor of mechanical and industrial engineering Albert Ratner.

"Our long-term goal is to help the university and supply power in a sustainable way," Ratner said. "It also is to show everyone else in the state how to take their local natural resources and use them to generate power as well."

For a more complete summary of University of Iowa displays and events at the fair, click here.