Car of the Future: Made Of Cannabis Hemp, Fueled By Coffee



Researchers at the University of Jordan believe that used coffee grounds — typically containing about 10 percent oil — could be a source of biodiesel automobile fuel in the future. And more researchers, these at Warwick University in the U.K., believe hemp fiber could replace the carbon fiber in auto bodywork.

They University of Jordan team, headed by Zayed Al-Hamamre, argues that we could get around 1,000 metric tonnes (one metric tonne = 1,000 kilograms) of biodiesel from coffee grounds each year. The scientists point out we could do this without using up more of the world’s ever-shrinking areas with arable land, reports Corinne Burns of The Guardian.

The team is currently working on the best way to extra and process the oils in coffee grounds, and their latest results were published in a recent issue of the industry journal, Fuel.

Motive Industries
Motive Industries’ Kestrel is fully electric, with zero emissions, and uses hemp-based body panels

Meanwhile, scientists — including the Warwick University team, headed by James Meredith — are looking for natural replacements for the carbon fibers currently used in autos, since they are so energy-intensive to make.
Earlier this year, Meredith’s team reported that hemp composite materials performed as well as expensive carbon fiber composites in impact tests.
Hemp cars aren’t just a theoretical endeavor, either. Motive Industries Inc, a Canadian firm, has already created a prototype electric car built from hemp composites. They call it the Kestrel, and its designers are looking for manufacturers to get the vehicle into production.
But those folks weren’t the first to construct a hemp car, either.
Automotive pioneer Henry Ford recognized the usefulness of the cannabis hemp plant, and in the 1930s ordered a car constructed out resin-stiffened hemp fiber. He even ran the vehicle on ethanol made from hemp biomass, reports Mr Lunk’s Hideout.