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Green Algae + Human Waste = Green Power 2

An algae-based wastewater treatment project is planned to be started in May, at Laguna wastewater treatment plant in the city of Santa Rosa, California.The pilot plant relies on native algae and marsh plants to purify sewage and produce methane.The methane gas will run a generator that charges a fleet of four electric maintenance vehicles.

The project is co-ordinated by Sonoma State University biologists. They have constructed six algae ponds at Laguna to clean a small portion of the wastewater stream, meeting state standards for nitrates and phosphates.Laguna serves a population of 250,000 people, and it would require more than 100 acres of algae ponds to purify the entire waste stream of nitrates.The current project measures only 800 square feet. Treddinick, the project development manager for the city's Utilities Department, plans to scale up the project to an acre.

Michael Cohen, the Sonoma State biologist who oversees the algae operation said they planned to extract oil from the algae, though they are aware of the fact that extracting oil from algae is a tough process. This is because of the variation in oil content of algae species and difficulty in extracting oil due the tough cellwalls of algae.

"We knew going in that we were going to be fighting a losing battle, but we thought we would see if we could make it work", said Hare, who is Cohen?s student at Sonoma State.

Source: http://www.miller-mccune.com/science-environment/when-sewage-is-not-a-dirty-word-12563/
Tue April 06 2010 03:24:09 AM by Mathumitha Wastewater treatment  |  Algae oil 1360 views

Comments - 2

  • Manohar wrote:
    Tue April 06 2010 03:16:50 AM

    How much funding the Sonata State would have had !
    How many research assistants would the university have funded !
    Now, how much more money is required to go to the next demo size ?
    This again is something which can be done in India !
    We have many small towns without proper sewerage.
    This may be a solution for all of them. !

    Vote Up! 0 Vote Down! 0

  • Mahesh wrote:
    Wed April 07 2010 11:31:03 AM

    Would be an Ideal and much needed project for indian towns..

    Vote Up! 0 Vote Down! 0

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