ChAP: Biofuel from aquatic algae
by Joseph McClain for Ideation magazine | November 11, 2009
Even if the wild, abundant—yet bony—diatoms aren’t ideal little bags of oil, they do offer some benefits: “They pay you back by growing very rapidly. So a low shell-to-lipid ratio is often made up for by the rate of growth,” Manos said. “If I can grow three grams of something that’s half as efficient in the time it takes you to grow one gram of something that’s perfectly efficient, I still win.”
StatoilHydro has seeded the enterprise with an initial $3 million investment. Other key partners are the Williamsburg energy advisory firm Blackrock Energy, the University of Maryland, the Smithsonian Institution, the University of Arkansas and HydroMentia, a Florida company that works with water-treatment technologies.