University of Michigan researchers say diverse mix of algae species will reduce crop failure risk

January 9, 2017 |

In Michigan, when growing algae in outdoor ponds as a next-generation biofuel, a naturally diverse mix of species will help reduce the chance of crop failure, according to a federally funded study by University of Michigan researchers.

Algae-derived biocrude oil is being studied as a potential renewable-energy alternative to fossil fuels. U-M ecologist Bradley Cardinale and his colleagues found that growing multiple algal species in 180 aquarium-like tanks helped stabilize biocrude production and made the system more reliable and efficient.

While the experiment was conducted indoors, its findings have relevance for outdoor cultivation, said Cardinale, co-author of a paper published online recently in the journal Environmental Science & Technology.

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Category: Research

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