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From Plastic Pollution to an Algae Solution

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11.08.15

The University of Georgia recently reported on research results that estimates the amount of plastic pollution that is generated each year. “Their study, reported in the Feb. 13 edition of the journal Science, found between 4.8 and 12.7 million metric tons of plastic entered the ocean in 2010 from people living within 50 kilometers of the coastline. That year, a total of 275 million metric tons of plastic waste was generated in those 192 coastal countries.” “Eight million metric tons is the equivalent to finding five grocery bags full of plastic on every foot of coastline in the 192 countries we examined.” UGA-infographic-plastic-waste ““We’re being overwhelmed by our waste,” she said. “But our framework allows us to also examine mitigation strategies like improving global solid waste management and reducing plastic in the waste stream. Potential solutions will need to coordinate local and global efforts.”(1) A viable solution: Algix’s Bioplastics from Algae Solaplast, a subsidiary of ALGIX, harnesses the potential of algae to make bio-plastics for the replacement of traditional petroleum-based plastics and for the reduction of biodegradable plastic costs. Our process includes innovations that reduce the environmental impact of plastic use and correct existing impacts from other sources. To our customers,  Solaplast can offer tremendous improvements to Life Cycle Assessments (LCA) and can allow sustainability objectives to be reached. Solaplast’s products will certainly improve a customer’s green image and will also generate buzz around their products, garnering extra recognition within the plastics sector and from their consumers at the register. Most importantly, Solaplast can offer all of these environmental benefits while being cost competitive in the market place. Algix resin 2022 website picture Solaplast’s innovative product solutions revolutionize the polymer space by providing bio-based sustainable products that do not compete with food production and help to reduce negative environmental impact. This allows Solaplast to provide products that positively impacts of traditional bio-plastics (including carbon sequestration, smaller ecological footprints, reduced petroleum dependence, and improved end of life options) without impacting food pricing or food supplies. Solaplast also provides customers a number of application based cost reductions and technical benefits. The potential for Solaplast resin use exists for a number of applications, and here at Solaplast we are always interested in helping our customers meet their sustainability goals through our custom formulating services. Solaplast also offers toll compounding to pioneering companies who would like to leverage our extensive technical background and specially modified extrusion capabilities to make their product innovations come to life. Resources: 1. http://ugaresearch.uga.edu/research-news/8-million-metric-tones-of-plastic-enter-the-oceans-every-year-study/#sthash.qeeWO3gR.dpuf 2. http://algix.com/  

Bioluminescence: Study uses algal cells to ‘shed light’ on sensing mechanical forces

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11.08.15

Algae are known to congregate and bloom in massive numbers, covering patches of the ocean in thick red and brown blotches. Some of these “red tide” events create dazzling nighttime light shows of blue-green bioluminescence resulting from the force generated by breaking waves. While many mysteries remain on how such red tide blooms emerge, marine biologists are now making progress in decoding the mechanisms that trigger the effect of bioluminescence. Bioluminescense Algae 1 Marine biologist Michael Latz from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego has been studying bioluminescence for more than 30 years and is now zeroing in on the forces that flick the “on” switch for bioluminescencent flashes in single-celled algae known as dinoflagellates. Dinoflagellates employ bioluminescence as a defense mechanism. They use the bright flash to ward off potential predators as well as call attention to the predators of their predators as a type of alarm. Dinoflagellates are equipped with an extremely fast response to stimuli, with bioluminescence produced only 15 milliseconds after stimulation. In a study recently featured on the cover and blog of Biophysical Journal, Latz and former Scripps postdoctoral researcher Benoit Tesson employed a state-of-the-art laboratory instrument called an atomic force microscope to study the force sensitivity of dinoflagellates with unprecedented resolution. They set out to measure the exact forces that trigger light production inside dinoflagellate cells, setting the specifications for the atomic force microscope, in which a calibrated lever was used to apply precisely controlled forces on individual dinoflagellate cells. Such diligence paid off, as the results identified the force conditions that were required to trigger the light. Cells responded to a minimum force of seven micronewtons, which, according to U.S. Navy physicist Jim Rohr, who is familiar with the study, is equivalent to the “weight of an ant resting on your skin.” natureslight_web-Tesson and Latz Bioluminescence Most interesting, the researchers say, was that if the same level of force was applied slowly, there was no response. The difference was due to the mechanical properties of the cells. According to a model they developed, at low stimulation speed the resulting energy was dissipated while at high speed energy was able to build up. “It is like the difference between pushing and punching; for the same applied force, at high speeds a deformable material acts stiffer and the shock is stronger,” said Tesson. The results will contribute to the use of dinoflagellate bioluminescence as a tool in engineering and oceanography to visualize flows that are difficult to study otherwise. As Leonardo da Vinci used grass seeds to observe water flow more than 500 years ago, scientists today use bioluminescence to naturally “light up” flow forces associated with jet turbulence, breaking waves, and the swimming movements of dolphins. Knowing the precise trigger point of light emission will aid studies in which bioluminescence is used to study flow forces. “Cells are sophicated integrators of the forces in their environment,” said Latz. “With these results we further our understanding of how the structural properties of these organisms affect their force sensitivity, and how force sensing evolved, because the system appears to have conserved elements that are used in force sensing by higher organisms, including humans.” So the next time you see how the red tide sparkles at night, Latz says, you can think of the algae as little force-sensing machines. The U.S. Air Force Office of Scientific Research Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative, National Science Foundation, and UC San Diego Academic Senate funded the research. Use of the atomic force microscope was provided by Scripps Oceanography marine biologist Mark Hildebrand. Sources: http://news.algaeworld.org/2015/05/the-force-behind-bioluminescence-study-uses-algal-cells-to-shed-light-on-sensing-mechanical-forces/ http://www.cell.com/biophysj/abstract/S0006-3495(15)00169-1    

The streets were paved with algae: a greener material?

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11.08.15

Algae for asphalt The process of surfacing a road isn’t complicated. Layers of asphalt, which is composed mostly of bitumen (a byproduct of crude oil distillation), are poured over an aggregate of crushed stone and sand; the asphalt acts as a glue, binding the mixture together to form asphalt concrete. Maintaining the roads, however, is a costly job. According to the Asphalt Industry Alliance it would cost more than £12bn to restore all road networks in England alone to a reasonable condition. Simon Hesp, a professor and chemical engineer at Queen’s University in Ontario, believes standard industry asphalt is not sustainable. “The problem with the composition is that it’s poorly controlled … it uses materials with poor performances,” he says. Hesp says the presence of certain oil residues lowers the quality of the concrete and is a key reason why roads are failing and many potholes need to be filled and cracks fixed. But there’s not just a maintenance cost. Asphalt, dependent as it is on the oil industry, is resource- and energy-intensive, which is why the race is on to develop a greener alternative. In Sydney an experiment is under way using printer toner waste blended with recycled oil to produce an environmentally friendly asphalt. And in the past few years there have been studies into the development of non-petroleum bioasphalts. At Washington State University researchers developed asphalt from cooking oil, and last year academics at Wageningen University in the Netherlands found that lignin – a natural substance found in plants and trees – is another suitable replacement for crude oil bitumen. Other investigations have looked into the use of soybean and canola oil (rapeseed oil) and coffee grounds. The WSU research, led by Haifang Wen and published at the end of 2013, concluded that the introduction of cooking oil can increase bioasphalt’s resistance to cracking . Wenn also claims it’s possible that, if commercialised, such bioasphalts could cost much less per tonne. The price of standard asphalt can fluctuate wildly as it’s dependent on the price of oil. Hesp isn’t convinced that cooking oil is the way forward. He says, like petroleum, over time it will cause roads to fail because of weak bonds. Bruno Bujoli, director of research at CNRS (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique), agrees that the use of cooking oil “chemically modified to reach appropriate mechanical properties” could significantly affect quality. He also sounds a note of caution about food security, saying that asphalt based on vegetable oils could, if scaled up, affect food stocks Bujoli recently played a key role in developing a bioasphalt from microalgae. It uses a process known as hydrothermal liquefaction, which is used to convert waste biomass, including wood and sewage, into biocrude oil. The chemical composition of the microalgae bioasphalt differs from petroleum-derived asphalt, but initial tests have concluded that it also bears similar viscous properties and can bind aggregates together efficiently, as well as being able to cope with loads such as vehicles. How it will perform over time is yet to be determined. The findings were published in April. Green roads Bujoli suggests that microalgae – also known for its use in the production of cosmetic and textile dyes – is a greener and more appropriate solution than agricultural oils. The latter, he says, should be kept for food production. “The benefits of microalgae over other sources include low competition for arable land, high per hectare biomass yields and large harvesting turnovers. There is also the opportunity to recycle wastewater and carbon dioxide as a way of contributing to sustainable development,” he adds. It’s a neat idea, with an admirable green mission behind it, but how much of an impact can it really have? Technology such as this is still in its infancy, suggests Heather Dylla, director of sustainable engineering at the National Asphalt Pavement Association, a US trade organisation for the paving industry. “A lot of interesting work is being done in this area, looking at everything from algae, to swine waste, to byproducts from paper making. It’s worth exploring these alternatives, but we need to be sure they provide equivalent or improved engineering properties. We need to understand how they affect the recyclability of asphalt pavement mixtures,” she says. She points to the “unique” advantage of asphalt when it comes to recycling. “Not only are the aggregates, which make up about 95% of [asphalt concrete], put back to use, but the bitumen can also be reactivated and used again as the glue that holds a pavement together.” Microalgae could yet put the paving industry on the road to a greener future. For now though, there are plenty of challenges – from price to scalability – for Bujoli and his team to address if the bioasphalt is to be commercialised. “This is our research focus for the near future. Our current laboratory equipment works in a batch mode,” explains Bujoli. “Scaling up the process will require the design of a large-volume reactor that can operate under continuous flow conditions.” Read more at: http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2015/jun/08/from-oil-to-algae-eco-friendly-asphalt-could-be-the-route-to-greener-roads

Ancient Algae is Discovered in Tropical Mountain Ice Cap

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11.08.15

diatom-peru-zoom Microscopic algae buried in a tropical mountaintop ice cap are helping researchers better understand what the environment was like more than a millennium ago. Finding diatoms — which are single-celled algae — in an ice cap high atop the Andes in Peru came as a surprise to the researchers, who originally intended to examine their ice samples for possible carbon content. This is the first time researchers have found diatoms in glacial ice from a tropical region, according to the study. Scanning electron microscope photograph of a freshwater diatom found in the Quelccaya Ice Cap on the Andes in Peru. Diatoms, which are a fraction of the width of a human hair, can typically be found wherever there is water. Some are generalists, requiring only water, while others are pickier, living exclusively in salty or fresh water, or thriving only where the levels of certain nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, are low or high. Regardless of where they are, the organisms are usually at the bottom of the food chain in their habitat. Diatoms had previously been found in glaciers in Greenland and Antarctica, and other polar and alpine regions, said lead author Sherilyn Fritz, a professor of geosciences at the University of Nebraska. Fritz said that the diatoms in Greenland's glaciers got there by latching onto dust particles in North America and travelling to Greenland on wind power as part of the system involving global dust circulation. In contrast, the new research suggests that the diatoms found in the Quelccaya Ice Cap in the tropical Andes of southern Peru had a much shorter commute, Fritz told Live Science.  The researchers think that these diatoms likely originated in one of the many nearby high-altitude lakes or freshwater wetlands, because most of the diatoms that the researchers found, like Brachysira vitera and Aulacoseira alpigena, are specific to such habitats. Mountaintop regions are notoriously windy — the diatoms may have been swept up from the lakes by the wind and carried to the icy mountaintop. Eduardo Morales Luizaga, an adjunct professor and expert in diatoms at the Universidad Católica Boliviana San Pablo Regional Cochabamba in Bolivia, who was not involved in the study, agreed that the wind might have carried the diatoms. But it's also possible that birds and other animals that drank or bathed in a nearby lake might have carried the diatoms — on feathers, feet or fur — to the glacier, or to the small ponds that can form on the ice during warmer periods. When the temperature drops, it traps the diatoms in an icy tomb, he said. Although not as abundant, the researchers also found diatoms from global dust in the ice. However, these diatoms were so excellently preserved that it is unlikely they had traveled very far, the researchers said. The core that the researchers analyzed was taken from around 480 feet deep (140 meters), and included ice that was deposited over a span of almost 2,000 years. The oldest diatoms found in the ice dated to the dawn of the Middle Ages, during the sixth century, and the younger diatoms dated to the later Middle Ages, during the 12th Century. Lonnie Thompson, a professor of earth sciences at Ohio State University and an expert on ice core paleoclimatology, collected the Quelccaya Ice Cap samples in 2003. The discovery of the diatoms in the ice shows that tropical glaciers have potential for researchers to investigate "how not just diatoms, but other life forms such as ancient microbes survived, thrived and evolved under extreme conditions and under very different climatic regimes," he said in a statement. Fritz said she was concerned about the rapid climate change-induced melting of the ice cap, and the implications of this for the local people who depend on the ice for water, as well as future paleo-environment research. She said that the ice is "very hard-won, and there's not much of it." The study was published in May in the journal Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research. Read more at: http://www.livescience.com/51132-ancient-algae-tropical-ice-cap.html

Sustainable oil from algae: the technology is ready, but what about the politics?

Posted by Algix in In the news | 0 comments

11.08.15

…when we talk about algae biofuel, we mean the green, renewable and sustainable version, rather than traditional fossil crude oil. The main requirements for making algae biofuel are: lots of sunlight, plenty of space, and easy access to the sea. Australia is an algae gardener’s paradise. To scale up any new technology, we need to consider not just whether we can make it, but also whether it is worth doing. Unfortunately, this involves rather dry concepts like productivity, efficiency, energy balance, and supply chain dynamics. These are critical to the development of business models for new technologies, but sadly they don’t translate easily into language that politicians are interested in. In the absence of a benevolent billionaire, the private sector is unlikely to take on the risks involved in bringing these emerging technologies to scale. This means that some form of government support is critical. With renewable energy investment growing ever more politically contentious, what are the incentives for spending scarce taxpayer dollars on something like this?

Growth industry?

In our recent study, we put algae biofuels under the cost-benefit microscope, to assess the viability of developing a full-scale algae biofuel industry in Australia. We used a technique called hybrid life-cycle assessment (LCA), which aims to evaluate all of the effects throughout the myriad supply chains of an industry – even one as huge and complicated as the oil industry. The results are striking: a large-scale algae biofuel production facility would create almost 13,000 new jobs and A$4 billion worth of economic stimulus in Australia. It would generate a total economic stimulus of 77 cents for every dollar invested, compared with just 13 cents in the dollar for traditional crude oil exploration and extraction (see table 1 in our paper). Commercial algae biofuel production is now a challenge of scale. The prize is phenomenal. Algae ponds covering an area the size of Sydney could satisfy the entire crude oil demand of Australia, which would do wonders for both sustainability and security of supply – currently, 82% of crude oil is imported. Pink Productivity the worlds largest algae farm           Pink productivity: the world’s largest algae farm. Steve Back Image. We know that large-scale algae cultivation is achievable. The largest algae facility in the world is at Hutt Lagoon in Western Australia, where 740 hectares of algae ponds are used to produce the food supplement beta-carotene. Meanwhile, the US federal government has been backing various large-scale algae projects, including Sapphire Energy’s expansion plans in New Mexico. However, the technological risks are significant, which is where hybrid LCA comes in.

Crunching the numbers

We used hybrid LCA to established a hypothetical case for assessing the viability of algae biofuel production in Australia. First, we identified a rural region in WA with the attributes needed to sustain an algae biofuel industry. Next, we used cloud computing to develop a hybrid LCA model for this region. For the first time, we integrated multi-regional economic input-output data for Australia with engineering process data on algae biofuels. This allowed us to quantify comprehensively the employment, economic stimulus, energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions of the algae biofuel supply chain, not just at the site itself, but throughout the supply chain. Our analysis shows that algae biofuel facilities would create local rural jobs, while also activating sectors of the broader economy associated with equipment, trade and business services. Then there is the environmental benefit: our study shows that the combustion of 1 tonne of algae oil instead of traditional crude oil would prevent the emission of 1.5 tonnes of carbon dioxide. Investing in algae biofuel production is environmentally, economically and socially sustainable, and will provide a much-needed stimulus to the economy while creating much-needed quality jobs in rural areas. Surely every politician would be persuaded by at least something on this list.

Algae Biomass Organization Announces New Board Chair and Vice Chair

Posted by Algix in Featured | 0 comments

11.08.15

ABO WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - Aug 6, 2015) - The Algae Biomass Organization, the trade association for the algae industry, today announced that Martin Sabarsky, CEO of Cellana, has been appointed Chair of the organization's Board of Directors for the 2015-2016 term, and Jacques Beaudry-Losique, Senior Vice President of Corporate and Business Development at Algenol, has been appointed Vice Chair. Previous Chair, Tim Burns, Co-founder and Board Member of BioProcess Algae LLC, remains on the board. Sabarsky and Beaudry-Losique will build on the solid work of their ABO predecessors to guide the algae industry as its member companies continue to build out a competitive supply chain for a plethora of products, from fuels and feeds to chemicals and nutraceuticals while also providing a novel -- and economically viable -- pathway for utilities to reduce their overall emissions through carbon capture and utilization. ABO's board guides the organization in its mission to educate the general public, policymakers, and industry about the benefits and potential of algae to provide sustainable solutions for commodity chemicals, fuels, food, and feed applications, as well as for high-value applications such as nutraceuticals, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetics among other applications. In addition, ABO's board works closely with its Executive Director to advocate for policies that can accelerate the development of key market segments and commercial-scale algae production facilities for the full range of products that can be made from algae. ABO's board comprises representatives from multiple sectors of an industry that is experiencing more investment and seeing new commercial facilities opening or being planned around the world. Board members come from industry sectors that include academia, professional services, algae biomass producers, technology suppliers, project developers, and end-users. "Martin and Jacques are respected leaders in the algae industry, and I look forward to working with them as we position algae technologies to have wide-ranging impacts in dozens of markets," said Matt Carr, Ph.D., Executive Director of the Algae Biomass Organization. "They are both existing board members, and their experience and organizational knowledge will help ABO open markets, develop investment opportunities, and advocate for policies that will accelerate this cutting-edge industry. Outgoing Chair Tim Burns deserves thanks for his invaluable leadership and hard work. I look forward to working with him as he continues his service on the board." Martin Sabarsky has more than 15 years of experience in the industrial biotechnology/cleantech industry and has served since 2011 as the CEO of Cellana, a leading developer of algae-based nutritional and energy products. Prior to joining Cellana, he led the corporate development function at Diversa Corp. (now known as Verenium Corp., a subsidiary of BASF) as Vice President of Corporate Development. Before Diversa, Sabarsky worked as a life sciences investment banker with Bear Stearns, where he was a lead banker on Diversa's $200 million IPO in 2000. He also worked as a transactional attorney with Latham & Watkins LLP. Sabarsky has a B.A. in Biology and Political Science from Brown University, a J.D. from Harvard Law School, and an M.B.A. from the Rady School of Management at the University of California, San Diego. Jacques Beaudry-Losique has more than 25 years of experience working in the energy and technology sectors and is the Senior Vice President of Corporate and Business Development at Algenol, a global technology developer of algae-based carbon emissions solutions and fuel production. Prior to Algenol, Jacques was the Vice President of Corporate Development and Strategy for Codexis, a publicly traded biofuels and biopharma company. From 2005 to 2011, he held senior management positions at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). While at the DOE, he led efforts to build a second-generation biofuels industry across two administrations, managed three clean energy programs, and served for two years as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Renewable Energy. He was also instrumental in decisions to invest more than $1.5 billion of Recovery Act funds in renewable energy projects, including $800 million in biofuels projects. He holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Montreal, an M.S. in Engineering Management from Stanford University, and an M.S. in Management from MIT. Products made from algae are the natural solution to the energy, food, economic, and climate challenges facing the world today. This tiny but powerful organism has the ability to simultaneously put fuels in vehicles, reuse CO2, provide nutrition for animals and people, and create jobs for millions of Americans. More information can be found atwww.allaboutalgae.com. About the Algae Biomass Organization The Algae Biomass Organization (ABO) is a 501(c)(6) non-profit whose mission is to promote the development of viable commercial markets for renewable and sustainable commodities derived from algae. Its membership includes more than 150 individuals, companies, and organizations across the value chain. More information about ABO, including its leadership, membership, costs, benefits, and members and their affiliations, is available at the website:www.algaebiomass.org.  

Israeli scientists explore algae as biofuel producer

Posted by Algix in In the news | 0 comments

10.08.15

New research shows that growing and producing bioethanol from algae of the species sea lettuce has potential but is not currently viable economically.

New Israeli research has shown that growing and producing bioethanol from algae of the species sea lettuce has great potential. However, the study has found that it is currently not economically viable. The global energy industry is constantly looking for renewable and environmentally friendly energy sources. Among the proposed solutions, fuel production from plant material has been marked as having a high potential. Plants are "primary producers", that is, they are able to harness the sun's energy and amass carbon dioxide to produce sugars and fats that make up tissues. Plant material can produce biodiesel or bio-ethanol, which can be used as a substitute for fossil fuels. In the last few decades there has been a rapid development in the pace of fuel manufacturing from plants, and at the beginning of the decade production was close to two million barrels per day. On the other hand, extensive growing areas needed for growing the plants come at the expense of producing food crops and also the economic profitability of the growth process and gas production is often marginal or such that it relies heavily on government subsidies. Israel Biofuel 1             New research at Tel Aviv University, which has just recently been completed, wanted to check if innovative methods of producing energy from algae are not only technically feasible but also economically sensible.

Energy, food and detoxification

The advantages of growing algae as a plant alternative to produce energy include a fast growth rate, a simple production process and the utilization of habitats not used for food agriculture. Already in the 1950s the United States invested in research to improve the growth of algae to produce energy, but later it lost popularity following the changes in the energy market and limited success in growing algea. However, in recent years, algae growth for energy is making a comeback due to growing awareness of the environmental implications of fossil fuel use and the fear of future instability of fuel sources currently used. At the same time technological innovations that allow the development of species of algae richer in fats and sugars, as well as methods for their production, may make the dream economically worthwhile. Despite algae's potential, it seems that the price of biofuels is currently too expensive to compete with fossil fuels, due to manufacture and production costs. For example, the cost of production of biodiesel from algae is currently estimated at seven dollars per gallon, double the price of regular gasoline. Therefore, it is necessary to find additional applications to accompany the algae-growing process and plant material produced and to make growth profitable. For example, an increase in marine algae, which contain organic material may help to clean seawater where the marine environment is polluted as a result of enrichment with organic matter. An example is the marine environment in the vicinity of fish farms, where large quantities of food and fish secretions flow into the sea, leading to its pollution. Another possible source of income is the utilization of remaining plant material after ethanol production in the food industry for livestock and fish in particular.

Coming full circle

Research at the National Institute of Oceanography in collaboration with Tel Aviv University and Bar Ilan University examined different stages in growing and producing bioethanol from algae of the species sea lettuce (Ulva). The study was led by Lior Korzen as part of his doctoral work. Among his academic advisors were experts in various scientific fields: Prof. Avigdor Abelson of Tel Aviv University who specializes in marine ecology, and Prof. Israel Alvaro of the National Institute of Oceanography who specializes in algae. Korzen bred algae near a sea bream commercial farm located in Mikhmoret on the Mediterrranean coast near Netanya. The algae were connected to net baskets that prevent their being swept away and that allow exposure to light and nutrients from water currents. "The growth focused on the Ulva genus of algae as we saw that it was a more efficient producer of sugar compared to other algae examined, and because you can grow it during most of the year," said Korzen. During the field work it was discovered that algae that grew downstream from fish cages located in Mikhmoret enjoy water enriched with organic matter and show a faster growth rate of 27 to 40 times compared with algae placed upstream from the commercial fish farm. As mentioned above, the profit of such growth is twofold: on the one hand increased growth rate and on the other hand, water cleaning. "The idea is to provide a solution to a problem that exists and will worsen with time, marine pollution due to acquaculture . Ulva serves successfully as a bio-filter for contaminated water," explained Korzen. The next challenge lies in producing ethanol. This process involves the breakdown of complex sugars such as starch into simple sugars such as glucose. Then, through the process of fermentation ethanol is produced. Korzen, guided by Professor Aharon Gedanken, developed a method in which the breakdown of complex sugars is done in conjunction with the sonication process, during which the products are often exposed to frequencies. Results showed that this method has an advantage in expediting the breakdown process.  

The bottom line

After studying the methods of optimal growth and improvement of the production process, Korzen turned to developing the economic model that examines the profitability of the endeavor . The aim was to examine how the volume of production and market forces affect the profitability of growing Ulva. The model included the cost of the construction and maintenance of the growth system as well as harvest costs and transportation to the production site. To this was added to the price of the production process and manufacturing the end products. The revenues that were taken into account in the model included the compensation to be received for the bio-ethanol produced in the process, and the vegetal sonication which is supposed to help in the production of food. The model results showed that given the prevailing market conditions and current growth, profitability is achieved only if there is a huge amount produced. Maximum profitability - almost 20 million euros for a period of 15 years of activity - can be achieved when the area of growth reaches 2,500 hectares. By comparison, according to future plans prepared by the Ministry of Agriculture, the area allocated to aquaculture in Israel is about 600 hectares. Therefore, in such a limited area, the model predicts a negative return of around 13 million euros for a similar period. It seems, therefore, that an increase in trade of seaweed to energy is not worth existing conditions in Israel today. However, a similar economic model may be appropriate for areas where available space larger growth. Former cites the example of the work done in China where marine farms covering an area of one million hectares. Read more at: http:...www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4686617,00.html

2015-Global Algae Biodiesel World

Posted by Algix in Short Posts | 0 comments

08.08.15

global-algae-biodiesel-world-2015-500x500           2 Day Algae Fuel State of Art International Workshop OCTOBER 25-26, 2015, Jaipur, India Algae Biodiesel: Commercialization, Research & Business Platform Potential, Promise and Problems of microalgae for liquid transportation fuels Introducing the real world of Algae and its scientific commercialization for Development of Sustainable Non-Food Algae Oil Crop Projects, Programmers and Priorities to Feed Biodiesel Industry Worldwide. Driven by climate change concerns and the rising cost of petroleum-based energy, companies and government entities are developing the use of biofuels derived from algae to reduce carbon emissions from power plants and generate renewable transportation fuels. Algae is one of the most promising sources of biodiesel as it is biodegradable and can be produced using ocean and waste water without depleting fresh water resources. The Global Algae Biodiesel World 2015 examines the vast global market potential of biofuel from algae. It explores the technology, new research, and knowledge for developing this next-generation biofuel. This is a programmed where you shall study & learn the ALGAE System in totality from the top Algae scientists, experts and technologists CJP provides you a single platform, the best expertise to discuss and analyze the present and future dynamics of ALGAE from a technological and economic angle. THE OVERVIEW Biofuels have received considerable attention recently. This attention stems from many factors, some of which are recent developments in biofuels production technology, the quest for independence from foreign oil, reduction in emissions and greenhouse gases and an improvement in the local economy. Additionally, government supports in the form of research grants for technology development, tax incentives and mandates have made boifuels more attractive than before. Not only is energy consumption expected to expand significantly by 2030, but alteration of the fuel mix to reduce reliance on fossil fuels is considered vital to the reduction of greenhouse house gases, which means that the market for environmental assets, renewable energy and clean technologies is truly global. The combination of these factors presents an opportunity for the construction of a diverse, balanced, lucrative portfolio of Biodiesel Properties and carbon assets. THE OPPORTUNITY Algae are one of the most promising feedstocks for future bio-diesel production. The advantageous points about algae are their widespread availability, higher oil yields and pressure on cultivated land for production of biodiesel is reduced. Thus, algae will be the future of fuel. Algae as a fuel source are incredible. Some types of algae are made up of 50% oil, which can be made into biofuel more economically. Theoretically, algae can yield between 1,000 to 20,000 gallons of oil per acre, depending on the specific strain. That is enormous productivity as compared with agricultural based biofuels. Scalability is seen as its greatest advantages, as a number of key industry players are gearing up their operations to meet the opportunity. Algae biodiesel have the added advantage of utilizing nonfood-based feedstock, with the abilities to grow on no arable land and utilize a wide variety of water resources including wastewater and seawater. THE ISSUES CJP’s Algae Biodiesel World 2015 focuses on the entire algae production from lab to scale. Topics are carefully selected to cover the Biology, Engineering, Marketing and Financial aspects of algae commercialization. CJP is recognized as an important platform for productive exchanges among the Academic, Commercial and Investment communities Join us at this unique knowledge platform to share the latest information on:

  1. What opportunities do algae have to offer in the coming decades?
  2. Why is there such a high level of interest for algae at this point of time?
  3. What influence and position will algae take over ten years in the global economy?
PROGRAMME AGENDA
  • The Past, Present and Future of Algae Production
  • Commercializing Algae Biodiesel: Prospects and Priorities
  • Algae Growing, Harvesting and Extraction Technologies
  • Scaling Up Algae Production to Commercially Viable Levels
  • Optimizing Efficiency in Algae Harvesting and Dewatering
  • Identifying and Creating the Ideal Strain
  • Algae Carbon Values: Perspectives from The Carbon Market
  • Developing a low cost novel & High Productivity Enclosed Hybrid System for algae farming for oil
  • Demonstration of Algae Photo bioreactor and Biodiesel Making
CJP’s Algae Biodiesel World 2015 shall Highlights the updated research and technology on algae biodiesel from around the World Algae Experts will meet to reveal the latest developments in algae research, the newest harvesting, dewatering and modification techniques, and tell how the process can be scaled up. CJP’s Algae Biodiesel World 2015 will provide an excellent opportunity to the investors, entrepreneurs, biodiesel companies, renewable fuel experts, their associates and academia to share their experiences and knowledge on Algae Biodiesel. It will give them an excellent opportunity to know more about the latest research and developments in the fields of algae mass production systems, photo bioreactor technologies and other important areas of Algae Biodiesel Industry. The Programme would cover all the topics related to Algae Biodiesel Industry with live demo of algae harvesting Time is winding down and you will want to sign up early as we expect available seats to fill up fast! Please Pre-register here And further information, kindly contact:  Coordinator, Advanced Biofuel Center At algaebdiesel@gmail.com OR Call +91 9829423333 Source: http://www.eco-business.com/events/2015-global-algae-biodiesel-world/

Soylent 2.0 is bottled, ready to drink, and made from algae

Posted by Algix in In the news | 0 comments

07.08.15

Soylent Soylent, the oddly named meal replacement with a niche following (particularly in the Valley) has announced its second product this morning: Soylent 2.0, which comes ready to drink in recyclable bottles. Each bottle represents one-fifth of a daily meal plan. Twelve bottles will sell for $29 when they go on sale in October; preorders go live today. Just like the original, it'll only be sold online, at least for the moment. Traditionally, Soylent has been sold in powder form with the idea that the user would add water at their home, making as much as a full day's ration at once — it's cheaper and more efficient to produce and ship it that way. As a product, Soylent has always been about efficiency — so I asked its creator, Rob Rhinehart, why they were moving to a less efficient approach. "Shipping around water is a little inefficient," he acknowledged. "However, we counter that by the fact that the drink does not require refrigeration and also does not spoil until at least one year. Given the amount of food that is thrown away, that spoils, and the unconscionable amount of energy that we spend on refrigeration in the United States, I think that it's still a vast resource savings over the majority of the food system." "SHIPPING AROUND WATER IS A LITTLE INEFFICIENT." Soylent 2.0 will undoubtedly appeal to current Soylent users as a new grab-and-go option, but the company seems hopeful that this will also expand Soylent's addressable base, perhaps among those who only want to use Soylent every once in a while to bridge a missed breakfast or lunch, or those who can't be bothered with the mess and trouble of preparing it from powder. Soylent and the company behind it, Rosa Labs, are venture-backed with funding from Andreessen Horowitz and Lerer Ventures. Rhinehart says that they had shipped 6.25 million meals at their last count, which works out to around 1.56 million bags of the powdered product. But once Soylent is pre-sold in a bottle, it starts to look a lot like existing meal replacement products — Ensure, for instance. Rhinehart disagrees: "It's really designed in a much different fashion," he says, noting that Soylent 2.0 will be processed using a newer method than the so-called retort sterilization employed by most drinks. He also blasts their nutritional value. "They're really not sustainable. I mean, they're loaded with sugar, they're just way too sweet, and they don't really have the macronutrient balance or the glycemic index that I would feel comfortable sustaining myself on or a user on." Rhinehart also boasts of Soylent 2.0's caloric bang-for-your-buck, but it's actually neck-and-neck with Ensure, depending on how you look at it. Soylent works out to about $2.42 per 400-calorie bottle, or $12.08 to meet your entire day's nutritional needs. Amazon will sell you 16 bottles of Ensure for $19.97 — $1.25 per bottle — but you'd have to drink nine of them to get 2,000 calories, and some of the nutritional requirements would still be out of whack, whereas Soylent 2.0 is designed so the numbers work out evenly. (Also, drinking nine of anything per day sounds horrible.) The pricing is surprisingly competitive with Soylent 1.5 — the bagged powder, which will continue as a separate product — at around $9.11 per day, if you buy it four weeks at a time in a subscription plan. "WE DID END UP CHANGING THE FORMULA A LITTLE BIT." The most interesting thing about 2.0, though, might be where the calories come from. For the first time, Rhinehart's team is using algae in a significant way, incorporating algal oil for a full half of its fat content. Does that affect the flavor? "We did end up changing the formula a little bit," Rhinehart says. He describes the taste as "somewhat recognizable" to current users, calling it "neutral, but still pleasant." (The company has recently hired a flavor scientist, he notes.) He's been hinting that he wants to use algae to make Soylent for quite some time, citing higher efficiency and the lack of need for traditional agriculture techniques; 2.0 is a start, but the powder will eventually be reformulated to incorporate it as well. And is Rhinehart — a well-documented nutritional experimenter — using 2.0 himself? "I've largely switched to the drink," he says. "Actually, I got rid of my refrigerator, and the problem with the powder is you need to keep the pitcher in the refrigerator."

Read more at: http://www.theverge.com/2015/8/3/9088407/soylent-20-bottled-ready-to-drink-meal-replacement

Algae Biomass Organization Announces New Board Chair and Vice Chair

Posted by Algix in In the news | 0 comments

06.08.15

ABO WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - Aug 6, 2015) - The Algae Biomass Organization, the trade association for the algae industry, today announced that Martin Sabarsky, CEO of Cellana, has been appointed Chair of the organization's Board of Directors for the 2015-2016 term, and Jacques Beaudry-Losique, Senior Vice President of Corporate and Business Development at Algenol, has been appointed Vice Chair. Previous Chair, Tim Burns, Co-founder and Board Member of BioProcess Algae LLC, remains on the board. Sabarsky and Beaudry-Losique will build on the solid work of their ABO predecessors to guide the algae industry as its member companies continue to build out a competitive supply chain for a plethora of products, from fuels and feeds to chemicals and nutraceuticals while also providing a novel -- and economically viable -- pathway for utilities to reduce their overall emissions through carbon capture and utilization. ABO's board guides the organization in its mission to educate the general public, policymakers, and industry about the benefits and potential of algae to provide sustainable solutions for commodity chemicals, fuels, food, and feed applications, as well as for high-value applications such as nutraceuticals, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetics among other applications. In addition, ABO's board works closely with its Executive Director to advocate for policies that can accelerate the development of key market segments and commercial-scale algae production facilities for the full range of products that can be made from algae. ABO's board comprises representatives from multiple sectors of an industry that is experiencing more investment and seeing new commercial facilities opening or being planned around the world. Board members come from industry sectors that include academia, professional services, algae biomass producers, technology suppliers, project developers, and end-users. "Martin and Jacques are respected leaders in the algae industry, and I look forward to working with them as we position algae technologies to have wide-ranging impacts in dozens of markets," said Matt Carr, Ph.D., Executive Director of the Algae Biomass Organization. "They are both existing board members, and their experience and organizational knowledge will help ABO open markets, develop investment opportunities, and advocate for policies that will accelerate this cutting-edge industry. Outgoing Chair Tim Burns deserves thanks for his invaluable leadership and hard work. I look forward to working with him as he continues his service on the board." Martin Sabarsky has more than 15 years of experience in the industrial biotechnology/cleantech industry and has served since 2011 as the CEO of Cellana, a leading developer of algae-based nutritional and energy products. Prior to joining Cellana, he led the corporate development function at Diversa Corp. (now known as Verenium Corp., a subsidiary of BASF) as Vice President of Corporate Development. Before Diversa, Sabarsky worked as a life sciences investment banker with Bear Stearns, where he was a lead banker on Diversa's $200 million IPO in 2000. He also worked as a transactional attorney with Latham & Watkins LLP. Sabarsky has a B.A. in Biology and Political Science from Brown University, a J.D. from Harvard Law School, and an M.B.A. from the Rady School of Management at the University of California, San Diego. Jacques Beaudry-Losique has more than 25 years of experience working in the energy and technology sectors and is the Senior Vice President of Corporate and Business Development at Algenol, a global technology developer of algae-based carbon emissions solutions and fuel production. Prior to Algenol, Jacques was the Vice President of Corporate Development and Strategy for Codexis, a publicly traded biofuels and biopharma company. From 2005 to 2011, he held senior management positions at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). While at the DOE, he led efforts to build a second-generation biofuels industry across two administrations, managed three clean energy programs, and served for two years as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Renewable Energy. He was also instrumental in decisions to invest more than $1.5 billion of Recovery Act funds in renewable energy projects, including $800 million in biofuels projects. He holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Montreal, an M.S. in Engineering Management from Stanford University, and an M.S. in Management from MIT. Products made from algae are the natural solution to the energy, food, economic, and climate challenges facing the world today. This tiny but powerful organism has the ability to simultaneously put fuels in vehicles, reuse CO2, provide nutrition for animals and people, and create jobs for millions of Americans. More information can be found atwww.allaboutalgae.com. About the Algae Biomass Organization The Algae Biomass Organization (ABO) is a 501(c)(6) non-profit whose mission is to promote the development of viable commercial markets for renewable and sustainable commodities derived from algae. Its membership includes more than 150 individuals, companies, and organizations across the value chain. More information about ABO, including its leadership, membership, costs, benefits, and members and their affiliations, is available at the website:www.algaebiomass.org.