A prediction: alternative energy to replace traditional petroleum-based fuels
The current energy model that is mainly based on the use of fossil fuels and oils is becoming obsolete. Many problems have emerged from this scheme like the negative environmental impact with its nefarious effect on global warming. The progressive depletion of reserves and geopolitical conflicts as well as the price instability has led to the pursuit of alternative renewable sources. Through the cultivation of algae it is possible to break the dependence on conventional combustible that jeopardizes the ecosystem of our planet.
Innumerable advantages provided by renewable energies
The already economically viable wind energy along with solar power with continuous and promising advances in recent years, are called to lead this new era. They are joined by a revolutionary option, the cultivation of microalgae to produce bio-fuels.
The generation of bio-fuels from microalgae provides countless benefits and can be considered in many ways as a complementary method to other renewable sources of energy. This approach addresses one of the aspects of more difficult resolution: a fuel for transport in a sustainable and cheap way. Many companies are immersed in the research and enhancement of such technologies and the first mass production centers are already under development.
A variety that is calling the attention of many researchers is the type known as Chlorella. Like any other photosynthetic algae it can produce starch from which it is possible to obtain bioethanol, a bio-fuel that can be used with domestic purposes.
The biological process of capturing solar energy
Microalgae are organisms that live in aquatic or in terrestrial environments with high levels of humidity. The role of seaweeds in nature is extremely important because, due to photosynthesis, they are able to transform inorganic matter into organic compounds using solar energy.
The resulting energy is stored on the biological structures of the seaweeds and is later harnessed by beings that feed on it. Therefore, it can be said that microalgae are the base of food chain. During the process of photosynthesis, atmospheric CO2 is combined with water releasing oxygen and sugars that the organism will use to produce different substances like cellulose and oils.
Microalgae have a very high multiplication capacity so they are able to absorb and store a large amount of solar energy. These organisms grow spontaneously in any kind of humid environment. However, in spite of its abundance in nature, they should be cultivated under controlled conditions if they are going to be used for the production of fuel.
In this way, it is possible to ensure the generation a variety of microalga that is suitable for the production of a specific kind of oil. It is estimated that there are more than 200,000 species of seaweeds. However, only a few of them have the necessary features to make viable the production of bio-fuels for commercial purposes.
On the other hand, the cultivation of these organisms in specialized farms ensures the production of an adequate volume. By means of the optimization of vital needs of algae it is possible to obtain a much faster reproduction than what would be achieved under regular conditions.
Additionally, if such organisms are directly obtained from natural environments, many ecosystems could collapse triggering a major catastrophe.