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Emerging Scientists Supplementary Issue IOpen Access

Spectacular Spirulina: How Yard Waste and Algae can be used to Make Clean Energy

    https://doi.org/10.1142/S2529732523970027Cited by:0 (Source: Crossref)

    We need energy, and while current renewable energy sources like solar and wind power provide us with electricity, they can be unreliable and the energy they produce is not suitable for long-term storage. But what is? Hydrogen. With the highest energy content per unit weight of any fuel and only giving off a byproduct of water, hydrogen is regarded as the fuel of the future. However, there is a problem with hydrogen energy: people are resorting to using fossil fuels to separate hydrogen from other molecules. We can avoid that by using the Spirulina Platensis algae to produce hydrogen for us. This project aimed to test yard waste as a viable nutrient source for Spirulina Platensis for the purpose of producing hydrogen. The use of yard waste makes this process carbon-negative. Algae were grown in 200 mL conical flasks with either commercial nutrient solution, distilled water, or 4 grams of yard waste, and the growth of algae was compared by determining cell density using a Secchi Stick and cell counting. It was found that while the concentration of algae in the flask with the yard waste solution grew the least, it still grew despite an observed change in pH. This suggests that yard waste can be used as a nutrient for algae growth, and lays the groundwork for further testing.

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