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December 02, 2006



Way to go Greenfuel. :)


All you need is to use biomass as the source of the CO2, and you wind up with a carbon-neutral energy system.

I sketched an outline for such a system:  Sustainability, energy independence and agricultural policy.


I've followed this closely for a couple of years now. This has the potential to be very, very big. Soon.

Chin Hsien

So far this is the most hopeful way to greatly minimize the rate of global warming and the energy problem. However, I wonder why they do not store the CO2 produced in the nights and feed those CO2 to more algae during daytime. The additional requirement is just the storage system for about 12 hours CO2 generation and more land for larger algae farm.


That's right poet, but biomass ought to come from manure and other waste, not fuel farmed cellulose or wood products. Biogas runs a fuel cell/turbine power plant at 75% efficiency.

By stopping nitrogen runnoff from waste treatment plants and farms a huge amount of methane now released by runnoff combining with sediment in lakes, rivers, and wetlands could be halted. And methane is 20 times worse on our climate problem than cO2.

No extra land is needed, these solar/algae systems can be mounted on roofs and over parking lots and highways.

Actually the cO2 can still be concentrated in the water algae mixture for storage during night time. By compressing it in tank that sprays a mist through the compressed gases. In a similar process to the way soft drinks are carbonated.

Compression storage would greatly increase the amount of cO2 trapped.


For this small-scale demonstration, which uses only a fraction of the associated power plant's daytime emissions, there is no point in storing nighttime CO2 output: presumably the bioreactors can already get all the CO2 they can usefully handle.


Ive followed this for a while as well, but it seems to me that while it is great for reducing pollution it doesnt actually reduce green house gases as the c02 is released when the ethanol or diesel are burned later on.


petr, if it uses up CO2 from either the atmosphere or from power plant emissions then it is reducing CO2 overall. If its from the atmosphere then its providing transport fuel that is CO2 neutral. If its from power plant emissions then using it reduces the amount of liquid fossil fuel that would have been required in its place.

Chin Hsien

To amagingdrx,
How can algae/solar system be mounted on roofs etc? It requires CO2 enriched flue gas, right? Down stream processes to convert biomass into ethanol and bio-diesel are also needed.
To Cyrus,
Thanks. Hopefully seccessful full-scaled bio-reactor/power-plant can be built asap.


Im sorry, I dont get your point Marcus.
Unless you bury or dump the algae into the deep ocean, the co2 from the coal burning process will be released when the diesel or ethanol from the algae is burned. I understand you get extra (secondary solar) energy out of the process which is good. But it is not c02 neutral.


Well petr the CO2 in the biodiesel is lost. But the other half of the algae is cellulose, which can be recycled back through the fuel cell. That cO2 is recycled back through the algae.

I have two ideas to reduce and offset the biodiesel emissions. Use the biodisel in hybrid plugin cars with fuel cell/microturbine backup generation. They average 1/10nth the cO2 emission of a conventional vehicle.

To offset this much lower release of GHG, biogas digestors running on manure and other high nitrogen waste that normally pollutes wetlands, prevent much larger releases of methane caused by the nitrogen pollution.

These methane emissions are 20 times more severe in terms of global climate change than CO2 per volume.

The collectors only expose the algae slurry to light Chin, that can be done with trough collectors and clear pipes. All the other processes, gas exchange, biodigestion, and fuel separation can be done at a central facility. The algae growing slurry only needs to circulate in the collectors when solar energy is available.


APS has an unusual amount of reliable sunshine. It's results don't translate to most c02 emitters sunshine indice.

What's missing in the comments is the unregulated payback or lack of it on this additional infrastrure or any specualation as to what it is in meaningful metrics.

Because there is already algae availabe for harvest. Go after it first, farm more of it deliberately for how much? Are there no semiactive volcanoes with co2 in immmensie quantities to serve the algae market from already?

Krassen Dimitrov

This is a scam, the numbers don't work. 150tCO2/acre is a very optimistic scenario and will still get you nowhere. Just building a hothouse costs $100/m2. Imagine what would cost to pave an acre with these babies from the picture, just to capture 150tones of CO2


this picture remind me with the Scud launcher missile

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