For one month only: San Francisco drivers fill up on algae

Posted at November 16, 2012 » By : » Categories : News » Comments Off on For one month only: San Francisco drivers fill up on algae

Starting this week, drivers in San Francisco can fill up their cars with US developer Solazyme’s biodiesel made from algae.

The month-long trial will see algae-derived fuel offered to drivers for the first time – at the same price as regular diesel – through Propel Fuels network of fuel stations in the Bay Area.

Solazyme’s SoladieselBD is compatible with existing diesel engines and has been shown to meet or exceed the quality criteria in place for vehicle fuels – and in fact performs better at cold temperatures than conventional diesel.

The fuel is produced by microalgae, which convert plant sugars to oils using fermentation, using Solazyme’s technology platform.

According to tests by National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), the algae-derived biofuel in a 20% blend with conventional fuel reduces particulates by 30%, CO by 20% and total hydrocarbons (THC) by 10%.

“Solazyme’s revolutionary algae-based technology platform has supplied our development partners and customers with advanced biofuels that meet or exceed some of the world’s most stringent fuels specifications and requirements,” says Solazyme’s vice president of fuels, Bob Ames.

The fuel has been demonstrated with fleet vehicles and buses, but the pilot programme with Propel is the first effort to make algae-derived biofuels available to the public.

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Related stories:
Neste Oil opens first European biofuel-from-waste pilot plant (29-Oct)
Audi fills up on promise of Joule’s waste water biofuel (5-Oct)
Lufthansa and Algae Tec to build biofuel production facility (24-Sept)
US Administration makes new investment in biofuel industry (4-Jul)

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