September 30, 2008

USU Receives Grant for Study of Algae

LOGAN (AP) -- Utah State University will share a $900,000 government research grant for biofuel production.

The Utah school will team with Montana State University to grow species of algae that thrive in geothermal vents and the Great Salt Lake in a test of their oil content.

USU energy lab director Jeff Muhs says algae that can withstand saline environments are useful because they could possibly be used to produce fuels using plentiful ocean water, sparing more valuable fresh water.

Algae accustomed to high temperatures could be used in conjunction with power plants to produce biofuel.

Algae that consumes carbon dioxide could use the carbon from power plants' waste gases to produce oils for conversion into fuel.

The research is one of six biofuel projects around the country funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.

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