mardi 29 juin 2010

Civil aviation test the fuel from algae

We've heard a lot about algae which polluted seafood and attracted the ire of local residents. Beyond the negative effect of algae on shellfish, it is used as food, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.

Today, I will talk about the use of algae in biofuel production. Indeed, freshwater algae can produce biomass. The first barrels of fuel made from algae have been produced and it is precisely the aviation industry who decided to test this new type of fuel, which explains my interest in the subject.

EADS, the parent of Airbus, has managed to fly a plane with a fuel derived from 100% algae. It was at the Berlin Airshow. The manufacturer estimated that biofuels could represent up to 30% of jet fuel used by 2030. EADS was very satisfied with the trial and they decided to keep going on in this direction. "It is a world first and a milestone for research at EADS, said Jean Botti, Chief Technical Director responsible for the multinational experience.This open the door for flignts carbon neutral and we will continue our research in this exciting field.”
Ecology has become a major concern for the aviation industry as evidenced by the Green Air Show held at Bourget a few days ago, which I talked about earlier.

The use of algae would be a good alternative to first generation biofuels such as ethanol which reduce the area dedicated to food culture, exacerbating hunger world. EADS said that the production of algae was not a threat to the crop for food because the alga was grown on very poor soils irrigated with unclean water or salt water.

But the challenge is to reach a production of algae at large scale and competitive price as yet, it is more expensive to produce algae oil then fuel made from oil. The aviation industry must innovate in clean fuels.

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