March 29, 2009
OSU researchers successfully got one type of cyanobacteria – more commonly known as blue-green algae – to live, grow and produce hydrogen while the cells were “encapsulated” in a solid state system, an important preliminary step to controlling this interaction of water, light and bacteria for practical use.
Significant progress still needs to be made in making the process more efficient and using light energy more effectively, but the advance demonstrates the feasibility of using these biological processes to produce hydrogen – which could be used directly as a fuel, or in hydrogen fuel cells to power the electric automobiles of the future.
The recent findings were published in the International Journal of Hydrogen Energy. Based on this and other progress, the U.S. Air Force Office of Scientific Research also recently awarded a grant of $938,000 to OSU, the University of Oregon and Indiana University to continue research.
Source : Oregon State Press Release