Jonathan Trent: Energy from floating algae pods


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100 thoughts on “Jonathan Trent: Energy from floating algae pods”

  1. sNb says:

    The tube design in no longer moduled though. So if it leak, the entire system would drain no?

  2. 52111centrumcz says:

    I meant harvestable energy; if that would have been achieved, it would have been all over the news by now.

  3. Mark Zauner says:

    Which universities do you know that offer that?

  4. adam b says:

    what software were used for making the first animation? I really like it

  5. Mark Zauner says:

    Thank you for your answer!

  6. Rhett Melton says:

    5:05 – 5:10 had me laughing my ass off.

  7. Rob B. says:

    Great Ideas, I'm hopeful for the future again.


  8. Adam B says:

    Make the membrane out of recycled water bottles. I think we have a few million of those floating around somewhere…

  9. lvutodeath says:

    What about Hemp? Algae is on water, hemp is on land.

  10. rstevewarmorycom says:

    That's the delusion of the denier, that "gee, these little energies are incapable by themselves, but we can give them a seat at the kids' table and they can plug a few holes". Actually wind by itself could meet all our energy needs, and solar all by itself can easily do it, and tidal and wave power is tens of times greater than we need, and geothermal is monstrous as well, but let's not admit that to anybody, or we might lose our investments in fossil fuels. What an asshole.

  11. robz40 says:

    too complicated.

  12. Elvis Florian says:

    I hope this helps us in the future

  13. VoiceOfAleppo says:

    "hippie" sources of energy?

    if so then evidence clearly suggests that your "mccarthian right wing fundamentalist" energy sources aren't doing the economy or the planet (which is the source of resources to begin with) any good.

  14. VoiceOfAleppo says:

    no you're too stupid … sorry for the frankness.

  15. robz40 says:

    As you're the clever one … make one.

  16. robz40 says:

    And as you are the clever one google withouthotair and read the entire book. Pages 284-285 in particular will also increase your super intelligence.

  17. robz40 says:

    page 285: "…What about algae in the sea?
    Remember what I just said: the algae-to-biodiesel posse always feed their algae concentrated CO2. If you’re going out to sea, presumably pumping CO2 into it won’t be an option. And without the concentrated CO2, the productivity of algae drops 100-fold. For algae in the sea to make a difference, a country-sized harvesting area in the sea would be required." simple thermodynamics and resources available

  18. miskee11 says:

    I'm very saddened by the fact that my stupid semi-trollish comment became the most thumbed up one here.

  19. ccarswell says:

    8:08 dude skims shit water without gloves..

  20. Jennifer Soderquist says:

    algae oil for fuel fb page, look it up.

  21. invisibleAzN says:

    actually bio diesel has been used by farmers and rural country folk for close to a century to power tractors etc.. So really this isn't even a "hippie" thing. I saw a video of a guy who builds algae bioreators that produce 22k gallons per 1 acer per year. This is not a right or left thing. This is a logical thing. Gov subsidies and fascism wont get us to renewable energy. Only an informed, moral responsible society will fix our problems, both economic (energy), and social.

  22. VendPrekmurec says:

    Another Monsanto's well paid "scientist"… Of course are chemical,multinational agricultural biotechnological corporations supporting this LIAR to send more of their genetic manipulated products with the blessings of farmaceutical, chemical companies who make Herbicides, Fungicides, Pesticides… FOR ALGEA…

    You should be a FOOL to trust this LIAR!

  23. Tom Brooker says:

    And how does Monsanto have anything to do with this? This is good science that has been well tested by many academics. Do you have a better idea or research to prove otherwise? Oh, wait i forgot, you are not a scientist, you are an uneducated internet troll.

  24. VendPrekmurec says:

    Are you a scientist?

  25. VendPrekmurec says:

    I see video games about Medal of "honor"… Scientist of the video games?

  26. VendPrekmurec says:

    You are an idiot. And you don't know what you are talking about.

  27. Miss Grace says:

    except if you will use heterogeneous process, etcv.. but very expensive and use lot of energy..

  28. Miss Grace says:

    First of all, cities produce a huge amount of wastewater, different chemicals exist inside this wastewater, the algae will cosume those chemicals and not 100% phytoremediation will occur, the dried algae reject from biofuel you will use as fertiliser will contain a lot of chemicals, and later gonna will be administrate by the other organism and later will end inside human bodies. Second, you can get oil from algae but transformation of that oil into biodiesel is also polluting the environment

  29. AlagomSwede says:

    Yes, but the carbon dioxide that is released when burning it is the same as the CO2 that the algae absorbed from the air through photosynthesis while growing. Your not adding any additional CO2 to the environment.

  30. David Großekathöfer says:

    you would have a nearly balanced carbondioxid record.
    perpetual motion machine do not work. Unfortunatly, the idear is in conflict with the fundamental lows of physics (Thermodynamic).

  31. Brandon Lisik says:

    All the CO2 it would release would have been taken out of the air during it's production.

  32. Kargadan says:

    unless you consider the fact that the diesel produced this way has 50-60% less carbon dioxide, no NOx gasses, no sulfur… so it isn't completely pointless is it?? also it runs on engines today without the need to change the infraustructure(which costs billions of dollars) and it is better for your diesel engine

  33. Larry Ham says:

    what about plastic being photodegradable? how long would we use the plastic that incubates the algae before the plastic's toxic material leaks out into the ocean?

  34. Liridon Kadriu says:

    I can wath with subtitles in albanian in my samsung tv, why cant in youtube channel ?

  35. Quirky Quark says:

    Interesting. I think a good summary is available at
    badassquark.wordpress . com/2013/10/30/energy-crisis-and-future/

  36. Donald Clark says:

    There are all of these great ideas from TED conferences that I don't see in my state of Missouri.  (Except for Factor E Farm)  Where are the people on the internet that I can make connections with, to effect positive change?

  37. Richard Green says:

    I applaud Trent and his team for trying something new, but the many unknowns Trent refers to prove that his dream is a FANTASY in the real world.  Why have none of these commercial systems been built???  "Some source of CO2", out at sea.  Hmmm.  Trent's "off-shore structures" would have no impact on marine organisms or shipping channels, and would be unaffected in severe weather… yada, yada, yada. "Trained seals for cleaning"??   "Protected bay.. somewhere in the world"… Even Trent's own assertions that this is not viable economically unless you consider myriad unrelated economic drivers (plastic mulch, wast water, carbon markets, etc…)  Plus, unfortunately, the solvent process typically required to harvest oil from algae is heavily patent protected and would restrict the ability of most technologies to ever be commercially viable.

  38. johan kwok says:


  39. Short E says:

    How can I get involved with  this?

  40. Jim E. Novak says:

    Your theory, seems plausible. And I realize we have to have alternative fuels, you must be aware of the enormous power of the major corp's, they will eventually crush your (our) expectations. Big oil and the other's will never let this happen, but it's worth the fight.

    Jim E.   

  41. Nij Jin says:

    i have red some articles about how to make a planet liveable again, if we put alot of moss/algae to planet mars and give it some water, will mars be able to have an atmosphere?

  42. kinfeofspaghetti says:

    He says at one point that this system would be able to provide SF with 25% of its diesel needs, how is that not profitable?

  43. Tommy Bender says:

    holy toledo    batman.. work lake erie…

  44. Magnus Webb says:

    The general idea sounds good, but it's still really hard to extract oil from the algae efficiently. And if it depends on high-lipid GMO strains then there's the constant problem of contamination (lots of other, hardier stuff will also grow in wastewater). It might be more efficient to let it dry out and just burn the biomass directly, or use it as a basis for soil/fertilizer.

  45. Ellie Dupont says:

    OMEGA System; This could save out coast.  We need to get on this boat, and real soon.  Vancouver Island has many outflow pipes. The most recent is going through a consultation process where it is coming up against a lot of road blocks. This OMEGA system could improve the marine environment, and eventually pay for itself. What are we waiting for?  Even if there are flaws to work out, it can't be worse than how the mollusks are suffering from too much CO2 now.  The Scallop industry has already taken a serious hit with long-time businesses have to close. The last few years have seen the aquaculture industry explode on the coast of BC; So, with respect to ocean levels of CO2 we need to do the right thing. And that is not what we 'have' been doing.

  46. Keithly Vite says:

    Does anyone know the specific type of freshwater microalgae used for OMEGA systems? I'm a debater and I can't find any evidence that states exactly what type is used.

  47. BEAR says:

    wow i hope this really comes true. let's hope they can put a stop to fossil fuels.

  48. AVINASH SINGH says:

    nice concept……
    hope to see implemented !!!

  49. rebecca Shetter says:

    Very interesting; saw a You Tuber convert his yard pool; growing duckweed for drying and consuming in drinks,( contains more protein and nutrients then soy.) He was using his chickens posted on the one side of the pool to supply the fertilizer for the ph levels and his fish were being fed by the duckweed. The water being collected from the bottom of the pool with large pipes and a 45 minute recycle pump was feeding the vertical hydroponic green house next to the pool. It was the best set up I have ever seen. He also had two small goats that gave him enough milk for drinking and cheese for his family. The goat manure was added to the hydroponic mix with a wire mesh bag. I also was reading about a man that created a nano that could be deposited into a landfill and within one month converted garbage into fuel for cars;( it looks thick and black like crude oil). There isn't any reason for increased taxes or war for fuel. We need to start to use what we have learned and stop fighting over land and resources. A small greenhouse in a yard and the land along the highways could produce enough food for our country without any more imports. Our World is 3/4 water and this water is teaming with life,its thermo collection is  what keeps us warm at night when the sun goes down; if we don't take care of it; we are going to have a difficult time surviving. Everyone is looking at the rain forest for our oxygen and they don't see the oceans are our main source for oxygen; without oxygen we will suffocate.  Scientists have been watching our oxygen levels going down for over a hundred years and the prognoses isn't good. A greenhouse in every yard with hydroponics, would give food from fish; algae and biofuel to run cars and additional energy. The fish could also feed the vertical gardens for our tables. The oxygen released by the algae could be piped into our homes; this is a win, win situation.

  50. istoleyourpie says:

    Is the amount of C02 recaptured quantifiable or by weight significant?  Current carbon credits sell for ~$25/tonne.  Unfortunately since he didn't mention it, i'm assuming he's smart and it's a "no".

  51. chipmunk3k says:

    im a student at university Studying Chemical engineering and its replenish-able fuel sources like these that get me excited ! but I would also like to see this type of technology implemented on house hold roof tops, this would be less intrusive and utilize "dead space" and even contribute to a house holds cooling during the day !

  52. Justin Sutherland says:

    24 people work for big oil.

  53. kris johnson says:

    Wonderful ideas and concepts. Also who thought this guy sounds and looks like Robin Williams?

  54. Matt P says:

    IMO…  Algae farming could be a risk to all the worlds algae supply.  In addition to normal organic farming methods that will inevitably single out the genetically superior algae for fuel production. Companies will demand GMO algae.  The GMO and Bred-for-fuel algae will decimate naturally developed algae.  Farmed algae that will then spread to and dominate the world.  Susceptibility to mutations viruses will increase exponentially. Threats that expose and exploit the weakness inherent of a genetically non-diverse "super-fuel" algae will become unmanageable. The worlds algae will disappear. Algae should be protected from farming at all costs, especially for fuel. No trees + no algae = No more o2.

  55. Mark Serrano says:

    if you used a container ship as a farm you wouldn't get in the way of marine traffic and wouldn't need to wait on waste water treatment plants and wouldn't need to take extra time to harvest. You could farm and refine on the ship. Then sail to a dock on land to unload your fuel. Second benefit is that you clean the ocean

  56. Indira Kulahmeto. a says:

    где перевод?

  57. Winston Quezada says:

    This man a some serious ideas. I hope he is taken seriously by the U.S government to make it work. But the government won't pay too much attention to it because it might affect their lobbyist and especial interest. With that being said, I'm a fan of his ideas. I wish I had the money to fund his project and brilliant ideas.

  58. John Benton says:

    While different, the world looks just as able to support Human life in future decades and centuries, if we listen to and help people like this. Complacency will be our undoing.

  59. AngelusMortis1000 says:


  60. Franklin Michael says:

    Biofuels are better than previous forms of fuel because it takes up Co2 from the atmosphere which it then releases back into it instead of adding stored carbon into the atmosphere, but it still releases Co2 when you use it and contaminates our cities, using electricity that comes from solar panels or wind turbines and using that algae just to feed fish or make compost instead of fuel wouldn't just be carbon neutral, it would actually take up co2 from the atmosphere and clean our waste water at the same time.

  61. Hans Lak says:

    Sounds like a serious project to me! Welcome to our #GlobalGoals acceleration #2030NOW these are the kind of projects that will change the world for good!

  62. Talltrees84 says:

    I lean more to electric vehicles but this is a good thing. Internal combustion vehicles will be with us for at least another ten years. Better to burn cleaner liquid fuels rather than dirty ones that we have to go to war over.



  64. Tim Skoglund says:

    Could the algae be grown at an accelerate rate by iron fertilization of the open ocean? Ships similar to oil tankers with netting or filters could collect the surplus algae and carry it to refineries or perhaps the refining could be accomplished on-board with the tankers arriving at port carrying crude oil or some other precursor.

  65. John Eddy says:

    Please enjoy our “Made-in-Tacoma, WA ,USA” Kosen Rufu victory 4 us all!! Never Give Up!!

  66. Sagano96 says:

    he sounds like Kevin Flynn from Tron xD
    in there is a new world!
    in there is our future.
    in there is our destiny!

  67. William Hubel says:

    If this is top-notch green engineering (and it sure seems like that to me), and it's a long shot by the designer's own admission, then we should really prepare ourselves for a nasty energy crunch in the near future.

  68. William Hubel says:

    Well we in the US recently discovered 'climate change' is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese to prop up their economy. So everything will be hunky-dory

  69. Erik Cooper says:

    If they use all the human waste for the algae plants. What will the fish eat ? They might starve :@

  70. Jonathang Trention says:


  71. ME ME says:

    Sounds like you are going to endanger the marine wildlife. Now I know why a lot of marine life such as manatees were taken of the endangered species list. This also brings up the issue of plastics being used in agriculture and containing BPA and other chemicals that are gassing of byproducts that can cause long term health and environmental issues.

  72. Władca Wymiaru says:

    If someone live in USA west shore know this is BAD idea!
    Hurricane will TORE APART those "floating algae pods" in everyear!

    Better idea is building new Nuclear reactors like Thorium one! And punch main CO2 source directly! Next cars – when electricity will be really cheap, batteries would replace standard diesel engines! Big ships can have molten salt reactor with…refrigerator size!
    The only one problem remain is trucks&big machines.

  73. Dwarf From The North says:

    Nice idea, but we don't need it anymore. Cost of solar goes down fast and as we electrify cars, we don't need as much fuel. But it can be useful to produce fertilizer. That was a wonderful idea though.

  74. Thomas Valentine says:

    Algae for CO2 sequestration? YES! Algae for food? YES! Algae for fuel? NO! Why? Because future fuel is electricity.

  75. Кевин Юань says:

    Forget about energy & bio-fuel. Use the OMEGA system to make EPA & DHA omega 3 essential fatty acid (EFA) instead. Have you seen the cost of Vegan Omega 3 these days? It cost as much as silver or gold. See link below to see what I mean about the cost of Omega 3 EFA.

    And if you are a environmental do good, then think of all the fishes that you will save from not having to be kill and harvested for their EPA & DHA omega 3 essential fatty acid. But if you are just greedy, then harvesting algae for their EPA & DHA omega 3 essential fatty acid is much more profitable than biofuel.

  76. K- Mar says:

    Why are we still not doing it?

  77. Matthew Niedbala says:

    This is great! I still believe that modern agriculture will outcompete this because we already have the infrastructure and it's cheaper to implement, but I'd like to see these compete for prices. Also the algae would be better for oils or biofuels and plastics while ag would be for alcohols and composites and fibers.

  78. TheaDragonSpirit says:

    This was a good idea then he said, create fish farms… ruined it for me.

  79. María Alexandra says:

    In case of a hurricane or another nature atmospheric phenomenon, have an option?

  80. damarh says:

    i like how everyone is considering the sea but ignoring the vast tracks of land in USA that is unused or barren of any other industrial purpose.

  81. Jerry Stone says:

    Sounds like he is a scam artist to me. Is he trying to raise funds, if so watch out.

  82. G. Dave3 says:

    I don’t think you.can beat Vertical growing of Algea that is constantly slowly revolving and the Algea is ‘scrapped’off as it grows. No need for complicated floating PLASTIC containers, that using in fields isn’t an answer, cos using plastic in farming NEEDS to end asap, not encouraged!.

  83. Robin Gilliver says:

    How many KW per litre!?

  84. Paul Delaunay says:


  85. indeed_ oofie says:

    Very helpful!! My best friend and I are working on a gifted project and this is exactly what we needed. Thank you so much!!

  86. amarjit kumar says:

    good evening sir i am student of btech plastic engineering & polymer science from india sir i wanna join with your technology beacause i guess this is best technology in biofuel is very usefull for energy source without make effect our echosystem.i wanna proceed ferther technology thank you sir.

  87. Carolina Ferreira says:


  88. Jørgen Fallet Mosand says:

    Isn't it better to use algae for food?

  89. R ICH says:

    Biology student here, And I'm Exited

  90. Ezra NS says:

    Didn't talk about biofouling and internal cleaning of the system

  91. Sara F says:

    So you put big plastic bags in the ocean? I'm sure there are ways to do this without using plastic bags bro…

  92. Nicolas Vanlangendonck says:

    What happened with this idea?Thank you

  93. Aereas Playi says:

    Wow america is stupid🤔

  94. RESatt999 says:

    it's not gonna happen with trump around :/

  95. J C says:

    @4:50 when you realize what he is about to get at. Oh boy oh boy

  96. spidey 749 says:

    If the plastic enclosure is sealed, how it will be able to sequester CO2 from the air?

  97. Joel Fullwood says:

    How do you control which algae grows? Just thinking of potentially harmful algal blooms unintentionally being introduced to the environment

  98. Gay Broshevik hates Anarchists says:

    very mean, very dope solarpunk aesthetic. 🌞⚙️🌻
    Green New Deal. ♥️😎🌹

  99. Rachel Baker says:

    Bro I have an essay about this

  100. Faizan Darsot says:

    host: so your not patenting it…
    jon: no, its open to the world

    gave me chills…… great work my guy!!

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