14 October 2010, 09:27 BST
The Ford Motor Company is taking a new step forward in the process of researching new possibilities of producing biofuels. The company’s scientists are currently studying algae as a feasible automotive biofuel, as part of a plan aimed at reducing the dependence on oil and pollution.
The Ford engineers have collaborated with researchers at the Wayne State University’s National Biofuels Energy Laboratory who are exploring the suitability of algae as biomass for future biofuels. The Ford researchers have also carried out experiments on their own to better understand the potential of algae oil.
However, Ford isn’t at its first attempt of discovering alternative fuels. The company “has a long history of developing vehicles that run on renewable fuels; and the increased use of biofuels is an important element of our sustainability strategy now and moving forward”, according to Tim Wallington, technical leader with the Ford Systems Analytics and Environmental Sciences Department.
Algae is just one of the potential alternative green fuels Ford is exploring. The company has also studied biofuels such as ethanol and butanol and supports “biofuels and biofuel blends from diverse and sustainable sources.”
“Algae have some very desirable characteristics as a potential biofuel feedstock and Ford wants to show its support for any efforts that could lead to a viable, commercial-scale application of this technology,” according to Sherry Mueller, Research Scientist, Ford Motor Company. “At this point, algae researchers are still challenged to find economical and sustainable ways for commercial-scale controlled production and culturing of high oil-producing algae.”
Source: Green Optimistic