U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack was scheduled to visit King of Prussia on Friday for the opening of a new industrial-sugars production facility and to announce $7 million in funding for biofuels research at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Eastern Regional Research Center (EERC) in Wyndmoor.
USciences Assistant Professor of Chemistry & Biochemistry Dr. Nathan West is a Co-Investigator on the grant awarded to the EERC. The grant will support development of technology for converting biomass (forest residues, horse manure, switchgrass and other perennial grasses) into biofuels and high-value specialty chemicals. Dr. West will be leading the development of a system for the production of specialty chemicals from the lignin component of biomass. Successful completion of the project will provide a green alternative to crude oil.