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Martin, Engineer
Category: General
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Experience:  i'm 41 and i never stopped studying and experimenting
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I want to grow algae for oil to make biodiesel. what strains

Customer Question

I want to grow algae for oil to make biodiesel. what strains of high oil producing algae would grow best in about 65-75 degrees. and where could they be purchased?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: General
Expert:  Anna replied 5 years ago.

This is an interesting proposition, but it may be more complicated than it first seems. Algae will grow at a variety of temperatures, but in general, it grows best at warmer ones. At 65*F growth would be slow, but 75*F would produce a fairly good growth rate. All algae contains oils, but it has been found that the highest oil content is in the floating algae on the tops of ponds. We commonly refer to it as pond scum. To get started with it, you could simply gather it from any pond where it grows. When conditions are right, it multiplies rapidly. There would be no need to purchase it. Once you grew the algae, you would either need to have specialized equipment to extract the oil, or be near a plant where they could do this. You can read many more details about growing and processing algae for biodiesel fuels on this reputable website:

I wish you success with your enterprise.

Expert:  Martin replied 5 years ago.
Hello. To answer your question, Dunaliella Tertiolecta is probably the best for biodiesel. Some may produce more oil %, some may produce biomass volume faster, some are easier to process than other but Dunaliella tertiolecta is probably the best all around type.

I am not able to find a place that sell culture/sample but you can surely get someone having that on the many algea growing forums. You may also ask one of the many algea "starter kit" sellers if they can provide you with this.
Martin, Engineer
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 4944
Experience: i'm 41 and i never stopped studying and experimenting
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Expert:  Anna replied 5 years ago.
Hi again,

Dunaliella tortiolecta is a marine algae, and may have special culture requirements because of that. It does have a high oil content, but you'll need to select algae that will grow in your area. There are two resources you may want to check into. UTEX at the University of Texas does sell algae of various kinds, including D. tertiolecta. They sell more useful 'bulk quantities,' rather than starter kits. They also offer workshops for people who want to learn more about algae culture for bio fuels. The next one is in March. For more on that and to see the algae they sell:

Here is an online group for people with this interest. You'll want to consider joining.