A Microalgae Lamp that Absorbs CO2!

Shamengo pioneer Pierre Calleja has invented something truly remarkable–a light powered by algae that absorbs CO2 in the air–at the rate of 1 ton PER YEAR, or what a tree absorbs over its entire lifetime! The microalgae streetlamp has the potential to provide significantly cleaner air in urban areas and revolutionize the cityscape.



11 Responses to A Microalgae Lamp that Absorbs CO2!

  1. I don't see any mention in that video of a lamp /powered/ by algae.

    All I see is a lamp surrounded by a tank full of water and algae, which is hardly a 'green' product.

    Sure the algae is going to absorb CO2 as it photosynthesizes, but making the electricity that is powering the lamps, that allow it to photosynthesize, is going to /produce/ CO2.

    Maybe if all the enery going into the system came from renewables it would make sense, but releasing the carbon in fossil fuels, just to turn airborn carbon into biomass, is utterly pointless.

  2. What I don't quite understand is that nearly all types of algae are photosynthetic, therefore they all "absorb" CO2 and produce oxygen as a byproduct. What makes this scientist's algae different?

  3. why not just plant an algae pool on the roof of a house with a grating to keep out mosquitoes? That way you don't need any electricity to make it grow.

  4. @polar, If you're reducing CO2 levels at a rate faster than you're producing them, then even if you are producing them by powering this algae lamp, you're still cleaning the air and having a positive impact. If you want a CO2 eating machine powered on magic and rainbows, you're at the wrong point in technology

    @Emeja, I don't think the video ever claimed they were "special". But you don't exactly find pools of Algae on the sides of streets and in peoples' homes. He's not inventing algae, he's using them in a practical way to reduce CO2 in dirty Air-eas

    @mark, I see several issues with something like that. First off water is heavy. I don't think a standard house roof can just have a pool put on it(though if you can find a way to do it practically then you can have a video about how you are a pioneer of technology). Also, I don't know specifically what algae require to thrive in large quantities, but it's quite possible it wouldn't be met as well as with this lamp. Furthermore, I don't think it's practical to put pools on top of buildings in urban areas, where these are going to be the most helpful. The reason this could be so potentially game-changing, is because it could be something easily put in urban areas.

    All in all, I think this is a pretty cool idea. I hope his research goes well, and he can attain the funding necessary, and can make this become something practical and used.

  5. Who goes around and collects the 500lbs of dead algae out of these things each year? CO2 is about 27% carbon by mass.

    And with the light on before the algae went in, I’d say it’s independently powered. In fact, the whole video could be replaced by the paragraph “Scientist proposes placing algae acquariums around city. Someone with two more IQ points notes that it’s more efficient to consolidate them to a single location for upkeep. Scientist’s funding quickly revoked.”

  6. Isn't anyone going to ask if it comes in aqua? =P
    Did a Yahoo! writer come up with the title for the video? It suggests that the lamp itself is powered by the algae/CO2 which it is clearly not, as we understood after watching the video. It's a good idea for something to add to existing street lamps, but they have to really think about the maintenance costs and see to it that said maintenance is done in a "green" fashion. Also do these lamp covers allow a sufficient amount of light through so that they are actually useful at night?

  7. And why does it matter that they installed it in a garage?
    Last time I checked CO2 wasn’t a poison. CO and gas-particles are, but I fail to see how the algae-thingie helps on that more effectively than any other liquid filter mechanism.

    Also unless he takes the algae and dumps it somewhere it cannot decompose, then the CO2 will just be released when the algae decomposes. I say save the ugly plastic/glass tubes and plant some trees! (then dump the tree in the ocean or fill a coalmine with it)