Corn Ethanol

Ethanol is a clear, colorless alcohol fuel made from the sugars found in grains, such as corn, sorghum, and wheat, as well as potato skins, rice, and yard clippings. Ethanol is a renewable fuel because it is made from plants. There are several ways to make ethanol from biomass. The most commonly used processes today use yeast to ferment the sugars and starch in corn. Corn is the main ingredient for ethanol in the United States due to its abundance and low price. Most ethanol is produced in the corn-growing states in the Midwest. The starch in the corn is fermented into sugar, which is then fermented into alcohol. Other crops such as, barley, wheat, rice, sorghum, sunflower, potatoes, sugar cane and sugar beets can also be used to produce ethanol.

Sugar cane and sugar beets are the most common ingredients for ethanol in other parts of the world. Since alcohol is created by fermenting sugar, sugar crops are the easiest ingredients to convert into alcohol. Brazil, the country with the world’s largest ethanol production, makes most of its ethanol this way. Today, many cars in Brazil operate on ethanol made from sugar cane.