Further Reading on Oil-From-Algae
For those skeptical about the idea that producing oil and other fuels from algae is viable in the near term, here are a few interesting links on recent developments I came across in putting the Phoenix article together. I was surprised by how far along this field seems to be.
Diesel fuel created from algae has been used to run a standard Mercedes C320 (Wired Magazine). Biodiesel from algae can processed to meet the same engineering standards that other biodiesels do (The Auto Channel).
The claim of a potential of 10,000 gallons of fuel per acre per year from pond-grown algae is backed by some serious scientists, for instance the Energy and Emissions Program Manager at the Boeing Company. Here’s a less technical item discussing the claim (Arcwire.org).
A company called PetroSun Biofuels is developing 1,100 acres of algae ponds in Texas to be used for biofuel development (Wired Magazine).
Here’s a CNN article on the claim that 100,000 gallons of oil per acre per year may be possible from vertically stacked algae incubators.
The processing test that had to be halted because the algae was growing too quickly was reported on in Business Week last December.
Finally, some cautious reporting regarding the potential and the difficulties with grow-in-the-dark algae is available from the MIT Technology Review and from a website that tracks developments in alternative fuels called Gas2.org.