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NASA Invites Media to Tour OMEGA System

April 13, 2012
AlgaeIndustryMagazine.com

Reporters are being invited to attend a one-hour guided tour of NASA’s Offshore Membrane Enclosure for Growing Algae (OMEGA) system from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. PDT, Tuesday, April 17, 2012, at the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission’s Southeast Water Pollution Control Plant located at 750 Phelps St.

On display will be various prototypes of the OMEGA System, an innovative method to grow algae using a unique floating cultivation system, clean wastewater and carbon dioxide. Developed by NASA Scientist Dr. Jonathan Trent and his research team, this approach to algal growth could produce biomass suitable as a feedstock for refining biofuels without competing with agriculture for water, fertilizer or land.

NASA’s project goals are to investigate the technical feasibility of such a floating algae cultivation system and prepare the way for commercial applications, such as the one being explored with the San Francisco wastewater project.

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission manages more than 1,000 miles of sewer pipes and three wastewater treatment plants that serve nearly 1 million residents, businesses, and visitors. As part of its upcoming multi-billion dollar Sewer System Improvement Program, the commission is evaluating various technologies to manage stormwater and wastewater, convert waste into energy, and provide benefits to communities and the environment. The commission has partnered with NASA on the OMEGA project and welcomes collaborations with other organizations as it seeks innovative ways to manage resources.

Reporters interested in attending this tour are asked to register through Huong Nguyen at huong.nguyen@nasa.gov or 650-604-4789 by 4 p.m. PDT on Monday, April 16.

For more information on OMEGA, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/omega

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