Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Algae Biodiesel: A Viable Alternative

The search for an alternative energy source to oil is one of the most pressing issues right now. Whether it be solar, wind, or nuclear, people are constantly looking for a new source of fuel and energy for the future. However, in recent years, biofuels are becoming more and more viable as a resource. And one of the most promising fields is in algal biodiesel, a lipid compound that is extracted from algal cells.

However, one needs to think of the potential ramifications of such a fuel. What are the potential ramifications it could have on global climate change, a situation that is already in a bad state? Fortunately, it seems that biodiesel will not impact climate change in a negative way.

But the real question is the total energy amount that can be extracted from the biodiesel. If it's not a good fuel source, than there is no point in even trying to harness it. And if more energy is spent extracting the lipid from the algae than what is gained, there is no point either.While the technology to extract biodiesel is still in a prototypical phase, there seems to be a lot of room to improve and grow, meaning that in the end, biodiesel could be a long-term solution to the ever growing fuel crisis.

Source 1: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0958166911007099

Source 2: http://pubs.rsc.org/EN/content/articlehtml/2011/ee/c1ee01791h

Source 3: http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11367-010-0194-1

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