Plenty of companies are working on creating biodiesel from algae, but this is the first I’ve heard of an individual making homemade algae-based biodiesel . Australian Charlie Trafford has been making biodiesel from cooking oil for many years, but he recently decided to switch over to a more sustainable source— algae.
So Charlie, a friend, and a biochemist set out to grow algae comprised of 10 to 40 percent oil. Eventually, the crew actually succeeded in building a unit that can produce a few liters oil a day. In the process, they supposedly created a technique to grow and harvest enough algae to make it commercially viable for biodiesel.
Now the retirees are looking for financial assistance to develop their technology. Of course, they’ll have plenty of competition from existing companies. But whatever the outcome of their commercial aspirations, Trafford and co. deserve kudos for their do-it-yourself success.