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  • Plastic shopping bags make a fine diesel fuel, researchers report

    Used plastic shopping bags can be converted into petroleum products that serve a multitude of purposes.

    Used plastic shopping bags can be converted into petroleum products that serve a multitude of purposes.

    Graphic by Julie McMahon

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      Used plastic shopping bags can be converted into petroleum products that serve a multitude of purposes.

      Graphic by Julie McMahon

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      Brajendra Kumar Sharma, center, a senior research scientist at the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center at the U. of I., with research chemist Dheeptha Murali, left, and process chemist Jennifer Deluhery, converted plastic shopping bags into diesel fuel.

      Photo by L. Brian Stauffer

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      The team produced equivalents of (from left to right, in vials) gasoline, diesel #1, diesel #2 and vacuum gas oil.

      Photo by L. Brian Stauffer

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  • To reach Brajendra Sharma, call 217-265-6810; email bksharma@illinois.edu. The paper, “Production, Characterization and Fuel Properties of Alternative Diesel Fuel From Pyrolysis of Waste Plastic Grocery Bags,” is available online or from the U. of I. News Bureau.