Feeds

Slime-powered Toyota Prius demoed

Schwarzenegger to test motor's mettle

The next step in data security

Leccy Tech With pee-powered cars a very real possibility, it shouldn't come as a shock that we may soon be driving vehicles that run on green slime.

Well, algae, to be more precise. The Algaeus is a modified plug-in hybrid Toyota Prius that, instead of unleaded, uses an algal biofuel developed by Sapphire Energy.

Sapphire grows the algae in salt-water ponds at a plant in New Mexico. Add a little CO2, a sprinkling of sunlight and - with the help of a proprietary microbial process - you end up with a hydrocarbon fuel that Sapphire CEO Jason Pyle said is neither alcohol-based nor an additive.

Algae_vehicle

The Algaeus: runs on algae

On the face of it, Sapphire’s fuel seems a sound idea. You have a method of fuel generation that doesn't rely on fresh water, doesn't needlessly use up valuable farmland and eats up CO2 emitted by other industrial processes.

Sapphire has already raised $100m (£61m/€69m) in venture capital and signed contracts with Boeing and Continental Airlines to develop algal aviation fuels.

The firm is also working on a new demonstration facility capable of producing 2m gallons of auto fuel and 1m gallons of jet fuel each year.

Those figures are a long way from the sort of the production scale needed to have any real impact on North America’s fossil fuel demand, but it’s a start.

The Algaeus car is currently on a ten-day tour of North America, which will include a stopover in Sacramento where Governor Schwarzenegger is apparently planning to pour a container of the green slime into the car's fuel tank. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SCREW YOU, Russia! NASA lobs $6.8bn at Boeing AND SpaceX to run space station taxis
Musk charging nearly half as much as Boeing for crew trips
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Thought that last dinosaur was BIG? This one's bloody ENORMOUS
Weighed several adult elephants, contend boffins
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
India's MOM Mars mission makes final course correction
Mangalyaan probe will feel the burn of orbital insertion on September 24th
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
City hidden beneath England's Stonehenge had HUMAN ABATTOIR. And a pub
Boozed-up ancients drank beer before tearing corpses apart
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.