Algae fuel in the United States
The Aquatic Species Program launched in 1978 was research program funded by the U.S. DoE, tasked with investigating the use of algae for the production of energy. The program initially focused efforts on the production of hydrogen, however, shifted primary research to studying oil production in 1982. From 1982 through its culmination, the majority of the program research was focused on the production of transportation fuels, notably biodiesel, from algae. In 1995, as part of the over-all efforts to lower budget demands, the DoE decided to end the program. Research stopped in 1996 and staff began compiling their research for publication.
Universities working on oil from algae include
- The University of Texas at Austin.
- University of Maine
- University of Kansas
- Old Dominion University.
- University of California, Davis
- University of Kentucky
Researchers at the Center for Applied Energy Research (CAER) of the University of Kentucky are currently developing the algae-mediated conversion of coal-fired power plant flue gas to drop-in hydrocarbon fuel. Through their work, these researchers have proven that the carbon dioxide within flue gas from coal-fired power plants can be captured using algae, which can subsequently harvested and utilized, e.g. as a feedstock for the production of drop-in hydrocarbon fuels.
Use of wastewater
At the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution the wastewater from domestic and industrial sources contain rich organic compounds that are being used to accelerate the growth of algae.
Algaewheel, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, presented a proposal to build a facility in Cedar Lake, Indiana that uses algae to treat municipal wastewater and uses the sludge byproduct to produce biofuel.
The National Algae Association (NAA) is a non-profit organization of algae researchers, algae production companies and the investment community who share the goal of commercializing algae oil as an alternative feedstock for the biofuels markets. The NAA gives its members a forum to efficiently evaluate various algae technologies for potential early stage company opportunities.
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- Crocker, Mark (March 21, 2014). "CO2 Recycling using Microalgae for the Production of Fuels". Applied Petrochemical Research. 4: 41–53. doi:10.1007/s13203-014-0052-3. Retrieved June 2, 2015.
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- "Biofuels from industrial/domestic wastewater". Retrieved 2008-06-11.
- "Algaewheel — Wastewater Treatment Specialists". Archived from the original on 30 May 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-18.
- "Indiana Company to Submit Proposal to Utilize Algae to Treat Wastewater and Create Renewable Energy". E-Wire. 2008-06-12. Retrieved 2008-06-18.
- National Algae Association
- A Look Back at the U.S. Department of Energy's Aquatic Species Program: Biodiesel from Algae
- Biodiesel Group (University of New Hampshire)
- Biofuelsdatabase.org (University of Minnesota)
- Algae as a Biodiesel Feedstock: A Feasibility Assessment (Center for Microfibrous Materials Manufacturing, Department of Chemical Engineering, Auburn University)
- Algae system transforms greenhouse emissions into green fuel (MIT/MITEI).