FRA invests in biofuels

With a vision to decrease the nation’s dependence on fossil fuels, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has awarded two research grants in a bid to advance the use of bio-based fuels and lubricants.

‘We are committed to reducing our carbon footprint through the use of alternative sources,’ said US transportation secretary Ray LaHood. ‘These innovative projects are just the latest steps in making our transportation systems cleaner all across the country.’

The FRA awarded $395,189 (€295,855) to North Carolina State University to continue its research into the use of biofuels for freight and passenger rail operations, which will result in a possible recommendation of a ‘premium’ biofuel blend for train engines.

Additionally, the National Ag-based Lubricant Center at the University of Northern Iowa received $371,373 to study the feasibility of using readily biodegradable soy-based lubricants by freight passenger railroads.

Commenting on the grants Federal Railroad administrator Joseph Szabo said: ‘FRA has a long history of funding research to make railroads more energy efficient and cleaner.’

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