Tagged With algae

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What was life really like here on planet Earth before animals were big enough to leave fossils behind? How did living things turn from dinky capsules of genetic material into the intelligent, complex organisms that do things like fart and type curse words into posts on the internet? Scientists think they have found the answer... in algae steroids.

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Making biofuel from algae has just got a little bit easier, as a newly engineered strain produces twice as much oil as its wild parent, according to Californian researchers.

Previous attempts to get this type of algae to make more oil crippled its growth, which isn't an issue with this new strain. Without the growth restrictions, we are now one step closer to producing biodiesel on a large scale, say the researchers.

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In a scientific first, researchers have discovered a bizarre inter-species relationship in which salamanders and algae cosy up together to share cells. Scientists aren't entirely sure why these two very different organisms have adopted such an intimate arrangement, but the discovery could represent a completely new form of symbiotic relationship.

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Video: If there's one takeaway from either the original 1982 TRON movie or the 2010 sequel, Tron: Legacy, it's that glowing stuff is always kind of cool to look at. To build off this, the talented and creative bakers at Pies Are Awesome managed to make a delicious-looking TRON-themed pie that glows in the dark, but is still safe to eat.

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As the women's synchronised diving teams took to the pool in Rio de Janeiro today, they were greeted by a strange sight. The diving pool had turned green overnight, while the neighbouring water polo pool remained a crystal clear blue. This confused the Olympic organisers, media, and the internet profusely. Long story short: It's most likely an algae bloom.

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The image above, "Eye of an Algal Storm" was captured by the European Space Agency's Sentinel-2A satellite over the middle of the Baltic Sea on 7 August. With a spatial resolution of just 10 metres, ripples and waves are captured in stunning detail. In the top centre of the image, you can even make out the wake of a ship as it slices through cyanobacteria-laden waters.

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It's the last thing you want to find floating on your backyard pool, but a Mississippi-based company called Bloom has developed a way to turn algae, that green slimy goo that makes it unpleasant to swim in a lake, into eco-friendly foam for use in yoga mats, sandals or luggage.

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Image Cache: The algal bloom in Lake Erie is particularly bad this year, thanks to a combination of agricultural runoff, sunlight, and warm water. The result, as seen by NASA's Landsat 8, is the Great Lakes turning slowly green.

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In the 20th century, oil was black gold. But as we march deeper into the twenty-first century, we could have a lucrative new fuel on our hands. One that's blue-green and sometimes a little smelly. It's found in wastewater, but it's capable of powering jets. It's algae.