Scientists produce two bio-fuels from single algae

A common algae commercially grown to make fish food holds promise as a source for both bio-diesel and jet fuel, a study says. “It is novel and far from a cost-competitive product at this stage, but it’s an interesting new strategy for making renewable fuel from algae,” said Greg O’Neil of Western Washington University and lead author.Algae contains fatty acids that can be converted into fatty acid methyl esters, or FAMEs, the molecules in biodiesel.

“The alkenones themselves, with long chains of 37 to 39 carbons, are too big to be used for jet fuel,” O’Neil noted.