Scientists Convert Algae To Crude Oil In 60 Seconds

November 20, 2012 9:04 AM

Scientists Convert Algae To Crude Oil In 60 Seconds

" Crude oil, from which all fossil fuels are made, is a dwindling resource.

There will come a point, some time in the future, where the expense of extracting it from deep under the ground becomes too great for the return on investment.

While one solution is to wean ourselves off fossil fuels entirely, another is to artificially create them–and biofuel made from algae is one solution. And scientists have proven that theoretically, it’s easy to create.

By putting green microalgae under intense pressure and heat–replicating the pressure and heat which has created crude oil over millions of years–researchers at the University of Michigan created biocrude oil in only 60 seconds.

According to Wired, the algae was “pressure cooked” in sand at up to 1,100 degrees Fahrenheit for around 60 seconds, after which 65 percent had been converted into oil.

The speed of the transformation is impressive–as recently as two years ago, a similar process took just under an hour.

Naturally though, there’s a catch "

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