Scientists have designed a new material system to overcome one of the biggest challenges in recycling consumer products: mixed-plastic recycling. Their achievement will help enable a much broader range of fully recyclable plastic products and brings into reach an efficient circular economy for durable goods like automobiles.
When the COVID-19 pandemic required nearly everyone to stay at home and change their daily routines, Deepanwita Banerjee picked up a new hobby. She started building a miniature house. For Banerjee, who was born and raised in New Delhi, India, reusing items around the house was learned at an early age. This perspective was ingrained and continues to influence her life now — from her at-home dollhouse project to recycling genes to build more sustainable products in her role at Berkeley Lab.
A group of biofuel experts led by Berkeley Lab took inspiration from an extraordinary antifungal molecule made by Streptomyces bacteria to develop a totally new type of fuel that has projected energy density greater than the most advanced heavy-duty fuels used today, including the rocket fuels used by NASA.
The biopolymer has far-reaching potential from medical therapeutics to replacing synthetic plastics. Armed with a deep understanding of how the enzymes makes acholetin, scientists now have a target for preventing bacterial contamination and the means to produce acholetin for a variety of purposes.
Pamela Ronald, biologist faculty scientist in the Environmental Genomics and Systems Biology Division (EGSB) and the Joint BioEnergy Institute’s (JBEI) director of grass genetics in the feedstocks division, has been awarded the 2022 Wolf Prize in Agriculture. The prestigious international science prizes are awarded annually to scientists whose work provides exceptional contributions to humanity.