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U.S. Military boosts investment in algae fuels

The forest green algae bubbling in a stainless steel fermenting tank in a suburban warehouse may look like primordial pond scum, but it is a promising new source of domestically produced fuels being tested on U.S. jets and warships.

In a laboratory just a few steps away from the warehouse, white-coated scientists for a company called Solazyme are changing the genetic makeup of algae to construct a new generation of fuels.

These “bioengineered” algae are placed into tanks, where they get fat on sugar beets, switch grass or a host of other plants. The sun’s energy, which is stored in the plants, is transformed by the hungry algae into oil, which can be refined into jet fuel, bio-diesel, cooking oil or even cosmetics.

[Manufacturing.net]