Gasohol requires no engine change

Can you provide any information about how one can manufacture ethanol, methanol, and gasohol? Also, what modifications of an automobile engine are necessary to use this type of fuel? Daniel Cypser Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

If you fill the fuel tank of your car with the increasingly available gasohol , you will not have to make any adjustment to the engine for it to work well, the automakers say. Gasohol is a 90-10 blend of unleaded gasoline and ethanol (or grain alcohol).If you were to use a much higher blend of ethanol in the fuel , or alcohol alone, you would have to modify the engine to accept the fuel.

Among other problems, straight alcohol wil corode some of the parts with which it comes in contact.

Alcohol and water mix readily, but when you get to cold temperatures, the water drops out and will freeze in the fuel lines. "You have to keep th water and the alcohol absolutely separate," says Joseph Calucci of the General Motors Research Laboratories.

Brazil has an intensive alcohol-fuel program under way.

Ron Stenvenson of Solar Southwest, Odessa, Texas, has told me about a book called "Making It on the Farm." The book, written by Micky Nellis and priced at etc. The address is: PO Box 100, Iredell, TX 76649.

Undoubtedly, there are other publications on the process for making alcohol-based fuel for motor vehicles.

You can also get in touch with a new company in Maryland called BioSynthetics Inc. The company, set up last fall by Anthony E. Clifford, a former senior executive with Solarex Corporation, says it will produce small-scale alcohol production units with a demonstration program to get under way sometime this year. Write to 25 East Church Street, Frederick, MD 21701. The phone number is (301) 694-6242.

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