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Oil spill or Algae?

July 25, 2009

Mystery blob leaves scientists puzzled

This was the title of an article written by Emily Sohn (MSNBC, July 22, 2009), from which I copied a few paragraphs:

A huge mat of oily goo caught everyone by surprise when it showed up off the shore of Wainwright, Alaska nearly two weeks ago. Since then, the mysteries have only deepened.

Preliminary testing showed that the goo was made of algae, even though it looked like an oil spill.

Initial reports indicated that it was a substance that resembled heavy oil, crude oil or intermediate fuel oil,” Hasenauer told Discovery News.

Investigations, however, revealed that there hadn’t been any large ships in the area for more than a week, and there were no wrecks nearby. Still, the Coast Guard responded as they normally do to oil spills: by sending out two pollution investigators to fly over the blob and to approach it by boat.

Dispelling rumors that the substance was 30 miles long, the Coast Guard estimated its size as 13 miles by a quarter of a mile. It was floating about half a mile offshore. The blob was amorphous, Hasenauer added, broken up into globules and sections, and constantly changing shape.

The Coast Guard gathered samples and brought them back to Anchorage. When scientists observed the samples through a microscope, they immediately concluded that the goo was made of algae, not fuel.

Anyone needs more proof that biofuel can really be made from phytoplankton….??

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. November 1, 2010 11:03 AM

    I don’t know If I said it already but …Excellent site, keep up the good work. I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I’m glad I found your blog. Thanks, 🙂

    A definite great read…

  2. April 20, 2010 9:50 PM

    Good post, I will save this post in my Mixx account. Have a awesome evening.

  3. April 8, 2010 8:57 AM

    Excellent post, I will be sure to save this in my Del.icio.us account. Have a good evening.

  4. March 30, 2010 1:34 AM

    I enjoyed your blog.

  5. October 20, 2009 8:29 PM

    You made some good points on this subject.

  6. October 3, 2009 12:21 AM

    Really nice posts. I will be checking back here regularly.

  7. September 24, 2009 4:18 AM

    I don’t know If I said it already but …Excellent site, keep up the good work. I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I’m glad I found your blog. Thanks, 🙂

    A definite great read..Tony Brown

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