Hello,

We noticed you're browsing in private or incognito mode.

To continue reading this article, please exit incognito mode or log in.

Not an Insider? Subscribe now for unlimited access to online articles.

Sustainable Energy

Fiber in Your Tank

Clean-burning natural gas is an attractive alternative fuel. Unfortunately, methane (the main constituent of natural gas) is not as potent as gasoline; a practical natural-gas car therefore requires a tank that is either prohibitively large or that stores the gas at high pressure (a dangerous option).

Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have patented a material that may solve this problem.

The material consists of carbon fibers a few micrometers in diameter and a few micrometers long, bonded into a block. Gas infiltrates the porous material and adsorbs to the surface of each fiber. A tank containing this material can hold six times as much methane as a conventional tank holds at the same pressure, says Rod Judkins, fossil energy program manager. Oak Ridge is seeking licensees.

Cut off? Read unlimited articles today.

Become an Insider
Already an Insider? Log in.
More from Sustainable Energy

Can we sustainably provide food, water, and energy to a growing population during a climate crisis?

Want more award-winning journalism? Subscribe to Insider Basic.
  • Insider Basic {! insider.prices.basic !}*

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    Six issues of our award winning print magazine, unlimited online access plus The Download with the top tech stories delivered daily to your inbox.

    See details+

    Print Magazine (6 bi-monthly issues)

    Unlimited online access including all articles, multimedia, and more

    The Download newsletter with top tech stories delivered daily to your inbox

/3
You've read of three free articles this month. for unlimited online access. You've read of three free articles this month. for unlimited online access. This is your last free article this month. for unlimited online access. You've read all your free articles this month. for unlimited online access. You've read of three free articles this month. for more, or for unlimited online access. for two more free articles, or for unlimited online access.