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Old 10-04-2008, 03:22 PM
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growing your own algae in a pond

so my good buddy just called me and said he wants to start to growing algae to make veggie or biodiesel. his pond is 15,000 gallons and in the back yard. we live in orange county so that could give you an idea if the climate is right. what's the best strain to grow? do we have to go out into nature and find it or is there a place online that sells it?

he's thinking to try it out in his back yard, make a few gallons a week for me and then when we get it down up the production on some land my dad has.

i know algae is the future but i'm not quite sure if it's worth the time to do it so small scale.

what do you guys think? any algae farmers out there??
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Old 10-04-2008, 03:55 PM
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Hey, I'm all ears on this one. My wife owns 50+ acres near Hemet, CA that is just sitting there and I am thinking this might be a good opportunity, at least until she decides to sell/develop.

I am very excited about the use of algae for biofuel. I live in the State of Nevada and, heck, it's nothing but desert out here that is absolutely good for nothing. I read that my state could supply the entire nation's need for biodiesel if we used about the 80% of the land that the U.S. government owns. We could pipe in CA saltwater and turn this state into something more than just the adult Disneyland that it is.
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Old 10-04-2008, 11:42 PM
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Good luck.............There are literally thousands of strains of algae in nature. Some produce large amounts of oil, and some produce very little. I know of none for sale to the general public. Growing algae in open ponds is problematic also. Cross contamination from airborne spores is a difficult problem. Keeping the proper PH level is a problem. Evaporation is a problem, and the biggest problem so far is removing the oil from the algae...............There are literally hundreds of people working on the problems involved, and millions of $$$$$$$ invested so far, with mixed results.

I belong to several other groups that have been working on small scale algae projects, and nobody has successfully built even a small plant yet. There are a few people that have done it so far, but all of them have big bucks behind them.
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Old 10-04-2008, 11:53 PM
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darn! we were going to try to do this low budget style too until we found something that worked and then upped the scale.
thanks though
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Old 10-05-2008, 01:40 AM
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Algae Info

You might find these links useful:
BioDieselNow - Renewable biodiesel fuel
ATCC: The Global Bioresource Center
Ecogenics Product 2
Biodiesel from Algae using Ultrasonication (Hielscher Ultrasonics)
Hope this helps.
Jim
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Old 10-05-2008, 01:48 AM
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wow thanks! i will check out those links. rep points given!!!
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Old 10-06-2008, 10:01 AM
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I had an idea about growing it in large plastic tube bags, the kind they use for running AC on movie sets, about 3.5 ft accross, and hundreds of feet long.

Problem is, how do you keep algae tucked away in a bag to prevent cross contamination, but yet inject air in it for the algae to suck up the Co2
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Old 10-06-2008, 12:48 PM
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I own a 300 acre fish farm and aquatic research company. We have been doing algae counts and cultures but there are only a few that produce oil in high amounts. I do thank that once we figure out how to make the right ones thrive you will have something. The only people I know of that have had any luck have been indoor research systems (very small scale and controled enviroment). We are going to keep trying, anything will be better than the mess we are in now.
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Old 10-06-2008, 09:02 PM
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Two of the leading companys in this field are here: The premier of a SoladieselTM powered vehicle at the Sundance Film Festival. And here: First Algae Biodiesel Plant Goes Online: April 1, 2008 : Gas 2.0
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Old 10-16-2008, 01:52 AM
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I have seen algae samples for sale on ebay.
But like has been said, that is the easy part.
Extraction appears to be the problem now, but if that is ever solved, look out oil companies.
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Old 10-16-2008, 09:05 AM
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What we are trying to do is isolate some of the green algaes that are already in our ponds. Make them shade out or over take the other algaes that don,t have much oils in them. Our end goal right now is to grow the algae, collect and sell to the processor for extraction.
It may not work like we would like it to, but we are trying and if it is ever worked out there is a LOT of water in the southern US.
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