European Commission Proposes New Energy Policy, Calls For 10% Biofuels by 2020
USDA: Booming US Ethanol Production Could Require Additional 1 Billion Bushels of Corn in 2007-08

US and German Algae Companies Form Strategic Alliance to Advance Bioreactor Systems

Greenfuel Technologies Corporation, a leader in the development of algae bioreactor technology for recycling CO2 in flue gases into biofuels, has signed a strategic alliance agreement with IGV (Institut für Getreideverarbeitung), a private industrial research institute headquartered in Potsdam, Germany. IGV is a pioneer in micro-algae research and production with more than 80 commercial technology deployments worldwide.

Under the terms of the agreement, GreenFuel and IGV will share proprietary algae bioreactor technology in an effort to accelerate the commercialization of biofuel production from recycled carbon dioxide in power plant flue gas emissions.

GreenFuel and IGV will also pursue commercial opportunities together in Europe. Once in commercial production, the GreenFuel Emissions-to-Biofuels process will allow power plants to significantly reduce carbon dioxide emissions, generate carbon credits, and produce clean, renewable biofuels. (Earlier post.)

GreenFuel estimates that its Emissions-to-Biofuels process can absorb a significant percentage (up to more than 80%) of a power plant’s CO2 emissions during the daytime, varying with available sunlight. The Emissions-to-Biofuels system scrubs NOx emissions around the clock.

Unlike typical agricultural biofuel feedstocks, such as soybeans or corn which have a limited harvest window, algae multiply every hour and can be harvested every day.

Algae can also be grown on poor quality land with non-potable water, so they don’t compete for land suitable for food crops. The carbon-enriched algae contain lipid oils and starches that can be converted into biodiesel and ethanol for transportation fuels. The residual protein can be used for animal feed and nutritional supplements. GreenFuel is currently involved in a number of Emissions-to-Biofuels pilot projects in the USA, Australia, Europe, and South Africa.

Resources:

Comments

allen_Z

Nice.


_I wonder what the 24hr sunlight exposure during the summer months above the Arctic circle woould do to algae growth. The sun is relatively low on the horizon, but is up all day.

SJC

This might be a good reason to have a CO2 pipeline system. Take it from power plants and ethanol plants to oil and old NG wells. You can take it out of the wells and use it for this on land that can not grow crops.

Andy

Green Fuel I'm waiting for an IPO......
I'd put my money and my mouth er lungs to....

Neil

There already is a fair sized CO2 pipeline in North America. One of its endpoints is Texas which has lots of dry wells, sunshine and land that can't grow crops.

Andy

allen Z I may be wrong be I believe algae do not require hi intensity light levles. I seem to remember that they prefer moderate intensity levels.

Cervus

I was wondering when European companies would partner with GreenFuel. They may actually meet their CO2 emissions and energy security goals this way.

Jim2

It would be interesting if someone would fiqure the cost of liquefing the CO2 on site, (such as at power plants or ctl/ctg sites) and sending it by rail to the desert's of the south west for algae conversion (I don't know how much water is used in their process). Even if the cost is slightly more than the oil produced, it could be worth the expense.

Neil

If oil prices sit around the $60 range for any length of time (I know it's lower at the moment) I think you will see the existing CO2 pipeline network expand rapidly as companies use CO2 in EOR. Once that effort is over the same network can be used for algae with the old wells used as reservoirs.

Rafael Seidl

East Germany has plenty of dirty lignite and sites contaminated by Communist chemical factories. It is also sparsely populated, by central European standards.

80% CO2 re-use would imply that much carbon would not have to be brought to the surface in the form of oil for transportation use. IFF it is affordable, that sounds more sensible to me than true sequestration of flue gases.

I was wondering if the visible light released during the combustion of coal or coal gas could somehow be transported to the bioreactors and, if the algae will grow 24/7 if the conditions are right. Anyone know?

Neil

Rafael: Interesting idea. I have seen simple light tunnels with tubes, mirrors and lenses used in buildings but I'm not sure if anything like those could be connected to the furnace at those temperatures.

dt

I was wondering if the visible light released during the combustion of coal or coal gas could somehow be transported to the bioreactors and, if the algae will grow 24/7 if the conditions are right.

You can calculate the peak emission wavelength if you know the temperature of combustion: lambda = 2898/T. T is in Kelvins, and the wavelength will come out in microns. The actual spectrum can be calculated using Planck's Law. The red end of light good for photosynthesis is around 700 nm (if the algae is using bacteriocholorophyll about 850-900 nm)

gr

Fluidized bed combustion:

2898/1100K = 2580.5 nm

Apparently not optimal for algae growth. However utilizing 1/3rd wavelength puts it right on target at 860 nm. Losses for the down sample would make this inefficient?

kevin

Andy
don’t invest in one thing especially new technology

There are mutual funds out there and there all doing pretty well

Check out Neuberger berman socially responsive fund

NBSRX

It only invests in energy friendly funds no nuclear

Its rated 4 star by morning star not pushing this one just using it as an example

dt

Losses for the down sample would make this inefficient?

I don't understand this statement. We are rapidly headed toward the Extreme Geek Zone here, but there will be some visible light (ordinary incandescent light bulbs have a color temperature of 2700K - 2900K). It falls off more quickly at the blue end, you can calculate just how much at 850 or 700 nm from Planck's Law. You'll also need to know the total surface area that's radiating, because that will give you the total energy emitted: E = ST^4, where S is the Stefan-Boltzmann constant = 5.67 x10^-8 W/(m^2 K^4). T again is in K, area in square meters, and yes the total energy is extremely sensitive to T. Now all you need is the algal response ...

Roger Pham

Rafael et al,
The radiant energy of coal combustion is high-quality heat energy, thermodynamically speaking. If one divert this radiant energy to grow algae, then we would have less energy available to produce electricity, whereas solar radiant energy is free to use.

Unless, quite ingeniously, you are contemplating a short-cut scheme for CTL, turning coal energy directly into algae oil in one step, and then the whole steam turbine apparatus would merely serve to recycle the waste heat of the new "Seidl's" direct one-step CTL process. :) If you can raise the combustion temp of the coal enough to get wavelength of light in the photosynthesis range, and then line up around the coal combustion chamber with glass walls (E-glass with low infrared transmittance) as thermal barrier, and then place the algae bioreactors all around the glass wall, you might have a deal!!

For me, I'd go the IGCC route for cleaner and higher efficiency usage of the coal energy, and wait til the mornin' for the sun to rise before growing any algae oil. The CO2 produced in the night can be stored til the morning.

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