Algae Biodiesel Fuel

Answers to Algae Biodiesel a 7th Grader Could Understand

Most people that are Interested in Algae Biodiesel want to find out the answers to the following questions……how algae biodiesel works….how is oil extracted from algae… do scientist grow algae…….pros and cons of algae biodiesel………what can we use algae biodiesel for? And they want the information in general terms. So we will answer a few of these questions now.

Algae as Biodiesel

Biodiesel refers to fuel produced from once living organisms. It is usually made into a liquid or gaseous state and most people use Biodiesel for running vehicles or supplying electrical power via a diesel generator.

Going Green With Algae Biodiesel

Because of the plentiful resources of algae biomass in freshwater and other marine sources, extensive studies have been conducted for the use algae as a potential source of biodiesel. For the production of biodiesel, large scale cultivation of algae or alga culture is carried out in various countries throughout the world. The important fuels synthesized from algae oil are biogas, biodiesel, biomethanol, bioethanol, biobutanol and dry algal fuel (similar to coal) such as the group has created. Many countries have implemented highly sophisticated techniques for enhancing commercial-scale cultivation of algae and the United States is a front runner in this technology.

Advantages of Algae as Biodiesel

The fast growth of algae is a contributing factor for commercial algae cultivation. Some species of algae can double their mass within a day. In comparison to other biodiesel sources such as soybeans or jatropha, there are certain advantages of using algae such as:
• The amount of oil from algae is comparatively much higher (about 30 times) than land crops.
• Marine water as well as wastewater can be used for commercial cultivation of algae.
• Unlike fossil fuels, biodiesel produced from algae are biodegradable, thus reducing environmental pollution. In case there is spills of algal-based biodiesel in water sources, there are no significant adverse effects on the ecosystem.
• Algae also sequester harmful Carbon Dioxide (C02), Nitrogen (N) and emit Oxygen (O).
Studies show that about 60 percent of algal biomass can be converted into biodiesel. The microalgae species are economically beneficial for biodiesel production than other larger algae species. The amount of carbon emission after using algal biodiesel is lower than those of fossil fuels.

Since biodiesel production from algae is a relatively new technology, more research is required to develop standardized protocols for cultivation and large scale commercial algae biodiesel production. Commercial production on a large scale usually means 1million acres under cultivation. The most popular method of extracting algal lipids is using an industrial oil press. For more information on what can be accomplished with algae biofuel visit our Biodiesel 101 E-Library.


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