[p2p-research] Algae Mines

Ryan rlanham1963 at gmail.com
Wed Nov 4 19:51:21 CET 2009

Mines that sequester heavy metals, potentially produce bio-fuels, and
use minimal resources...

Sent to you by Ryan via Google Reader: Algae Mines via Neatorama by
Marilyn Terrell on 11/3/09

Here’s another story about abandoned man-made structures, but this one
may have a happy ending.

Instead of using aboveground ponds to grow algae for biofuels,
researchers at the Missouri University of Science and Technology have
proposed growing algae underground in abandoned mines. What are the
advantages? Underground mines are cheap, maintain constant temperature,
solve the aboveground evaporation and contamination problems, and the
site preparation has already been done by the mining companies.

But don’t algae need sunlight to grow? Not necessarily, says mining
engineering professor David Summers.

It happens that algae work best when they use only the blue and red
parts of the light spectrum, which can be provided by LED lights, and
they need periods of darkness in which to process the photons.

An added benefit: Mine owners like the idea because it eliminates the
need for them to clean up the sites, as algae are particularly good at
sequestering metals.

Win + win + win? I guess we’ll find out.

More information at Scientific American.

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