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Local High School’s Award-Winning Algae-to-Biofuel Research Student presentation

April 29, 2014 @ 7:00 pm

NOTE: This meeting was originally scheduled for March, but had to be cancelled due to a personal emergency. It’s now the topic of our April meeting, hope you can join us!

On Feb 20, 2014 the Green Team at Daniel Boone High School in Birdsboro, PA, learned they won first prize for the entire Eastern Region in the <a>Lexus Eco Air & Climate Challenge</a> and $15,000! This followed an earlier win in the local category and a $10,000 prize. This group of remarkable local high schoolers has presented their work on algae as a renewable energy source at the State Capital in Harrisburg and in Washington DC at both the Senate Office Building and the US Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office. We are delighted to have them as our speakers at MAREA’s monthly meeting on Tuesday April 29.

The Green Team is a part of the Daniel Boone High School’s Algae Bioreactor Biofuels research Group (ABBRG) based in Birdsboro, Pennsylvania.  The ABBRG is a part of a seven year project which began as student research into different types of alternate energies including solar, wind, natural gas, geothermal and biofuels. During their research, the Green Team stumbled onto algae as a source clean, renewable biofuel. Ah ha!

The ABBRG was formed with the commitment to build a research facility intended to grow, harvest, and dry algae, to extract the lipid oils, and to transform the lipid oils into biodiesel. With a $1,000.00 grant from First Energy/MetEd, the facility was constructed. In their presentation, the Team will describe the biofuel facility, experiments, and research findings on a variety of topics including water chemistry, oil extraction techniques, and algae strain selection.

The project and team are led by Daniel Boone High School physics teachers Shannon Helzer and Sid Harwood. For additional information, see the Green Team website <a>Go Clean, Go Green, Go Algae</a> and this article in Lancaster Farming (<a>page 1</a>, <a>page 2</a>)

Please join us. After the meeting, plan to stick around and chat with friends old and new. We’re also interested in your ideas for MAREA speakers, activities and services. Light snacks will be served. Hope to see you there!  

Click here for Directions and Map

Free DVD with MAREA membership  While supplies last, all new and renewing MAREA members will receive a free copy of “Saving Sunshine, Keeping the Lights on with Batteries and Solar Power,” the 30-minute DVD produced by MAREA this year with funding from the Berks Community Foundation and distributed by Bullfrog Films. It’s terrific film, offering an interesting and easily understood explanation of the electricity grid and distribution generation, especially the role of batteries with solar. MAREA is a 501(c)3 non-profit. Donations and memberships are how we keep the lights on. You can join at the meeting or anytime online. Thanks for your help. 


TEK Park
9999 Hamilton Blvd.
Breinigsville, PA 18031 us


Mid-Atlantic Renewable Energy Association (eastern PA)