Medway campus to be powered by algae fuel

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Media captionProf Pat Harvey has been testing algal cells

A power plant using algae fuel is to be built by scientists at the University of Greenwich in Medway with the aim of solving the world's energy problems.

Algae occurs naturally in seawater and is high in glycerol which can be burned to generate electricity once extracted.

It is bio-degradable, non toxic, has no odour, and produces virtually no smoke.

With the help of a grant of four million euros, the university hopes to become the first in the world to power a campus with glycerol by next year.

It will be using waste glycerol from the bio-diesel industry, but scientists say the idea in the future is to harvest the algae.

Prof Pat Harvey, head of bioenergy research at the university, said the "game-plan was ultimately to get enough glycerol to be able to supply mankind with all the fuel that it needs on a renewable basis".

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