3/22/2012

An Evolution in Heating Buildings Has Arrived

Los Angeles based OriginOil, specializes in converting algae into fuel, an innovation that can be life changing for the energy use of buildings. They are working on developing a pilot for an urban algae farm concept that would use wastewater to help grow algae, which is then used to generate energy, also treating the wastewater in the process.


OriginOil launched a pilot program testing out the farm at the La Defense complex near Paris. Using the RT 2020 sustainable energy framework, the French government mandated that new commercial buildings must purify or recycle water, and they must also produce more clean energy than they consume.  Installation of heat-generating toilets is suggested to achieve both goals.



Algae has the ability to absorb both CO2 and pharmaceutical chemicals, which are often discarded in wastewater, and can't be treated by conventional sewage treatment plants.  By using flat panels the photobioreactors can be incorporated into vertical surfaces, which would be perfect for the exterior of tall urban high-rises.  For every unit of power produced, you also generate up to four units of heat.  This innovative heating and waste water treatment method could be a god sent for water departments and  buildings all across urban centers.