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April 13, 2012 / George

NASA Ready To Show-Off Algae Biofuel Research Project

NASA Ready To Show-Off Algae Biofuel Research Project | TPM Idea Lab.

Wow. This is cool.

NASA has developed a system that captures carbon dioxide and helps to prevent pollution from wastewater while creating renewable algae biofuel, fertilizer and possibly animal feed, too.

NASA calls its system OMEGA, for Offshore Membrane Enclosures for Growing Algae, self-contained bags of wastewater and fast-growing algae cultures that are designed to float in seawater off the coast of a landmass and produce biofuels, NASA hopes for fueling planes.

As the algae grow inside the bags, they absorb sunlight and carbon dioxide through the bags’ membranes and produce oxygen, which releases to the atmosphere through the membrane.

The algae also absorb nutrients, creating fresh water that passes easily through the membrane into the sea, acting as a next-level treatment phase, helping to reduce the risk of creating local dead zones.

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