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Methanol, a Potentially Renewable Energy Resource


Methanol was first discovered in 1823 by condensing gases from burning wood. Methanol has been used for more than 100 years as a solvent and as a chemical building block to make products such as plastics, plywood, and paint. It is also used directly in windshield-washer fluid and gas-line antifreeze, and as model airplane fuel.

Methanol has been used as a fuel on vehicles produced by major auto manufacturers in the US. Methanol has recently been discontinued in favor of Ethanol, which is a less corrosive fuel and more friendly to critical fuel delivery system components on-board the vehicle.