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Pentagon Developing Cost-Competitive Algae For Jet Fuel

Posted By Jorge Chapa On February 17, 2010 @ 1:31 pm In Environment,Green Transportation,Innovation,Renewable Energy | 4 Comments

algae jet fuel, pentagon biofuels, eco-design, sustainable design, green design, green transportation, pentagon, darpa

DARPA, the well known research arm of the Pentagon, has just announced that they will soon be able to transform algae [1] into biofuel [2] at costs that are competitive with fossil fuels. The agency is on track to achieve a cost of $3 dollars a gallon for jet fuel, and their plan is to then develop a large-scale refinery that can produce around 50 million gallons per year. Is this the beginning of the biofuel [3] revolution?

algae jet fuel, pentagon biofuels, eco-design, sustainable design, green design, green transportation, pentagon, darpa [4]

Currently there are significant problems with biofuels — the clearing of land, the use of land for fuel instead of food production, and the difficult-to-assess greenhouse gas emissions. However, if we are going to produce them, creating them from waste [5] or algae seems like the way to go.

DARPA’s new project is expected to deliver roughly 1,000 gallons per acre of farm. By next year, if all goes well, the US Air Force will be testing a 50-50 biofuel blend in their planes. Even better, part of their plan involves creating facilities that could create the fuel essentially anywhere on the planet.

Granted, all of this is currently going towards greening the military — an oxymoron if we’ve ever heard of one. But one must still remember that research projects developed in the military have often changed the world for the better.

+ DARPA [6]

Via Guardian UK [7]

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URL to article: http://inhabitat.com/pentagon-developing-cost-competitive-algae-for-jet-fuel/

URLs in this post:

[1] algae: http://www.inhabitat.com/2007/11/26/algae-hydrogen-balloon-fuel-by-202-collaborative/

[2] biofuel: http://www.inhabitat.com/2009/09/08/algae-covered-buildings-to-boost-biofuel-production/

[3] biofuel: http://www.inhabitat.com/2009/12/09/self-destructing-bacteria-could-be-the-key-to-better-biofuels/

[4] Image: http://www.inhabitat.com/2010/02/17/pentagon-developing-cost-competitive-algae-for-jet-fuel/algae2/

[5] waste: http://www.inhabitat.com/2009/02/03/oslo-buses-to-run-on-poo-power/

[6] + DARPA: http://www.darpa.mil/

[7] Guardian UK: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/feb/13/algae-solve-pentagon-fuel-problem

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