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Slide 1 - Algae Energy - Challenges & Efforts Narasimhan Santhanam, Oilgae Presentation in Oct, 2008, Texas, USA
Slide 2 - How difficult is it to achieve the energy Holy Grail?
Slide 3 - Contents For each of the various aspects of algal energy Problems present Efforts & solutions
Slide 4 - Aspects Considered End products Strains Oil yields GMOs Methods to grow algae Choice of cultivation plant Problems in cultivation Open pond systems Photobioreactors Harvesting Extraction Transesterification Energy input/output Land requirements Scaling up Quality of biodiesel
Slide 5 - End Products Biodiesel Ethanol Hydrogen Methane Biomass
Slide 6 - Biodiesel Greenfuel - recycled CO2 Solazyme - fermentation Blue Marble - polluted water systems Inventure - algae-jet-fuel Aquaflow - algae in sewage Aurora - GM algae Solix - CO2 from breweries
Slide 7 - Biodiesel - continued Seambiotic - CO2 from powerplants Cellena
Slide 8 - Ethanol Ethanol from GM cyanobacteria (Univ of Hawaii) Algodyne - algae PBR that can produce multiple end products (fuels), including ethanol Algenol - “algae produce ethanol in the gas form”
Slide 9 - Hydrogen Using hydrogenase enzymes (triggered by sulphur deprivation) - biophotolysis Using Cu to block oxygen generation Manipulating genes that control the amount of chlorophyll DIY Algae Hydrogen Kit - Amy Franceschini & Jonathan Meuser - biophotolysis
Slide 10 - Methane Methane production by pyrolysis (Wu et al, 1999) - direct pyrolysis of marine nanoplankton
Slide 11 - Biomass “Under favourable conditions, some algae strains have produced over 180 T / ha /yr of biomass” Solena - Uses high temperatures to gasify algae.
Slide 12 - Strains NREL’s ASP did not specify any one species as the best, though they concluded diatoms and green algae were promising Microalgae or macroalgae? Blue Marble - wild algae blooms Solazyme - Dunaliella species C. reinhardtii - sulphur deprived to produce hydrogen
Slide 13 - Strains Others: Neochloris oleoabundans Scenedesmus dimorphus Euglena gracilis Prymnesium parvum Phaedactylum carterae Tetraselmius chui Tetraselmius suecica Isochrysis galbana Nannochloropsis salina Botryococcus braunii
Slide 14 - Oil Yield Increasing oil yield by: Nutrient deprivation - Sulphur & Nitrogen deprivation Silicon depletion ACCase gene placed to increase fatty acid
Slide 15 - GMO PetroAlgae - Environmentally-friendly algae Solazyme - Optimizing biochemical pathways for hydrocarbon production
Slide 16 - Photosynthesis or Fermentation? Photosynthesis - many companies Fermentation - Solazyme FAO - “direct extraction of lipids appears to be a more efficient method for obtaining energy, than fermentation”
Slide 17 - Choice of Plant Single or multi-purpose Multi-purpose Combined with power plants Combined with wastewater treatments and sewage Greenfuel - power plants Aquaflow - sewage Inventure - power plants?
Slide 18 - Cultivation Problems Formulation of Medium Calcium, Magnesium can cause precipitation problems Water might require conditioning Montana Micronutrient Booster - GSPI
Slide 19 - Cultivation Problems Provision of CO2 CO2 could cover a large part of operating costs Covered area carbonators - bubble covers In-pond carbonation sumps Recycling of non-lipid carbon from extraction residues
Slide 20 - Cultivation Problems Water Circulation Paddle wheels Airlift pump Archimedes screw pump Gas lift mixing
Slide 21 - Problems in Open Pond Light penetration Circulate algae using paddle wheels Placing the light in the system - submerged into the tank Passive optical system - Bionavitas
Slide 22 - Problems in Open Pond Odour related problems Result mainly owing to lack of oxygen Planned cultivation and harvesting should take care of this
Slide 23 - Problems in Open Pond Contamination, temperature, pH & salinity fluctations Owing to: Temperature & light variances Infiltration from local algae Evaporation, dust particles, rain. Solution Hybrid algae product system - cross between open and closed pond systems - GSPI Combo of open pond and PBR - Enhanced Biofuels & Technologies
Slide 24 - Photobioreactor Problems Choice of PBR Dynamic Biogenics develops low-cost, scalable bioreactors Solix B iofuels - “Massively scalable PBRs” Texas Clean Fuels - optimized for CO2 sequestration and biofuel feedstock production Valcent - vertical bioreactor
Slide 25 - Photobioreactor Problems Choice of PBR Origin Oil - Helix bioreactor Academic & Univ Centre in Nove Hrady - Czech Republic - Penthouse PBR using solar concentrators with linear fresnel lenses
Slide 26 - Photobioreactor Problems Cost of PBR DEC Simgae system - simple, benefits of both & closed systems
Slide 27 - Harvesting Method of Harvesting Besides simple sedimentation, all other methods are expensive The “expensive” methods - straining, filtering, flocculation Cost-effective (?) methods Induced bio-flocculation followed by sedimentation or flotation AlgoDyne Ethanol Energy - new process to harvest biomass from marine algal blooms
Slide 28 - Harvesting Long harvesting period GreenFuel - harvests algae daily Advanced Biofuel Technologies - Over-expression of ACCase leads to overproduction of triglycerides
Slide 29 - Harvesting Long harvesting period GreenFuel - harvests algae daily Advanced Biofuel Technologies - Over-expression of ACCase leads to overproduction of triglycerides
Slide 30 - Harvesting Time of Harvesting Ability to determine the right time to extract oil from feedstock is critical Current methods to determine these are expensive, time consuming and unreliable BioGauge “bio-profiling” technology - from International Energy Inc.
Slide 31 - Harvesting Harvesting Cost Aquaflow - developed a scalable method for harvesting algae in the wild
Slide 32 - Extraction Choice of extraction Primary Expeller Solvent Extraction Super critical fluid extraction Less well-known Enzymatic extraction Osmotic shock Ultrasonic assisted extraction Soxhlet extraction
Slide 33 - Extraction Cost of extraction Numbers quoted are quite high - what are the real numbers? Energy requirements OriginOil’s new method to extract oil without resorting to chemical solvents, using a process called lysing, built on their patented method of “Quantum Fracturing”
Slide 34 - Transesterification High FFA could create transesterification problems Basu & Norris (2005) have developed a process to produce esters from feedstock that have a high FFA content using calcium and barium acetate as a catalyst. SRS Biodiesel - FSP-Series Acid Esterification pretreatment system for high-FFA feedstock
Slide 35 - Energy Input & Output Best-case - Macro-algae can generate 11000 MJ/dry algae & micro-algae 9500 MJ/T. Solena’s plasma gasification tech consumes less than 1/4 of the energy it produces
Slide 36 - Land Requirements Growing algae on solid carriers in ocean - Kansas State Univ. - Jun 2008 Nutrients for algae in sea water - algae grew much faster when supplied with dust from a desert Valcent’s Vertigro uses area above a plot of land. Algae grown in sewage ponds - Aquaflow Bionomic
Slide 37 - Scaling Up When transferred to outdoor test facility, growth rate, % oil yield decreased dramatically from those from laboratory results (NREL) (biodiesel produced per acre in OTF was just 10% of that produced in lab)
Slide 38 - Algae Biodiesel Quality Not enough data High FFA content Solazyme tests algae biodiesel that has superior performance under cold weather conditions (algae engineered to produce an oil with optimized fatty acid profile) One way of bridging quality gaps is to blend biodiesel from different feedstocks?
Slide 39 - Conclusion We are still not yet there, but the clarity about the problems we face and the diversity of solutions being attempted make the goal look more reachable than ever before.
Slide 40 - Thank You