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Microalgae biofuel technology : Taiwan

More than 2000 amazing inventions from almost 600 companies around the world are featured in this year's Taiwan International Invention Show and Technomart.This year's theme is Green Future, Smart Life, Biotech and Medicare.

Taiwan's Industrial Technology Research Institute unveiled their new biofuel system.
The system can continually extract oil and filter out residue from micro-algae, which is 85 percent water.
The Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) , which developed the technology, showed off the process of turning microalgae into biodiesel .

During the process of consuming carbon dioxide, microalgae turns carbon dioxide into materials containing oil. The ITRI uses these materials to produce crude lipids that can then be converted into biodiesel. According to the ITRI, one gram of algae will produce 0.5 grams of lipids.
"Taiwan is encircled by the ocean, which makes it very convenient for obtaining microalgae to produce biodiesel, " said Lin Yun-hui, a manager of the ITRI's biofuel laboratory.
Lin said a liter of ocean water contains 1 gram of microalgae, which can be multiplied to about 5 grams after a week of cultivation.
"However, we have invented multi-layer filters that are able to boost the density of the microalgae in ocean water and extract about 120-150 grams from a single liter of ocean water," Lin said.
However, Lin noted that production costs of microalgae biodiesel are high and said it remains to be seen when such fuel will be commercially viable.
The ITRI's microalgal biofuel production technology development has been financially sponsored by the Bureau of Energy under the Ministry of Economic Affairs in a four-year project that started in 2009 and will cost a total of NT$240 million (US$7.67 million). (By Wei Shu and Frances Huang) 
Sat October 02 2010 01:19:37 PM by Jacintha 25 microalgae biofuel  |  algae biofuel  |  taiwan  |  ITRI

Microalgae: The ultimate source of biodiesel -- UPLB

Research on a new and exciting type of biofuel could very well result to the production of Mircoalgae, or Third Generation  biodiesel that is expected to become the ultimate source of energy in the years to come, particularly for the transport sector. In Laguna, Philipines.



Scientists of the University of the Philippines (UPLB) are gearing up for host researches on microalgae, commonly known by most people as pond scum, which has a lot of potential from an seemingly unlikely energy source.

Prof. Rex B. Demapelis of UPLB?s College of Engineering and Agro-industrial (CEAT) and Agro-industrial (CEAT) and the Institute of Biological Science (IBS) of the College of Arts and Sciences, said this third generation biofuel is synonymous with algal fuel or oilgae, derived from algae considered superior to other fuel feedstocks. Algae grows rapidly and are rich in vegetable oil, and can be cultivated in ponds of seawater, minimizing the use of fertile land and fresh water, Demapelis said.






UPLB experts said that research into the mass production of algae is focused mainly on the microalgae, which comprise a vast group of photosynthetic, hetero-trophic organisms that are typically less than 0.4 millimeter seaweed (also a source of bioethanol in which the university has also a pioneering research.)



Scientists said that preference for microalgae is largely due to its less complex structure, fast growth rate, and high oil content. Their small size allows for a range of cost-effective processing options.


Even if a number of bio-feedstocks are currently being experimented on for biodiesel production, microalgae appear to be the only feasible future solution for replacing petro diesel completely, according to Prof. Demapelis.



He said that finding more suitable fuel feedstocks has always been a central agenda of UPLB scientists. Through the efforts CEAT and IBS, the University has taken the first steps towards tapping into the vast potentials of algal fuel.



Demapelis said that Algal fuel, as promising as it is, has some serious downside. While algae are typically easy to propagate, obtaining the algal oil is a tedious, difficult, and often expensive an process. Creating the proper mixture for algal fuel is also a major challenge, he added.




Chlorella vulgaris, is microalgae of choice, which was recommended by Prof. Owen Nacorda of IBS. Although there are a number of microalgae species capable of producing oils and lipids necessary for biodiesel processing, Chlorella vulgaris was selected because it is readily available and abundant in our country?s natural environment.

Dr. Demapelis said that research has shown that the potential oil yield of this microalgae species could range from 58,700 lipid per hectare (L/ha) to 136,900 L/ha for microalgae with 30 and 70 percent oil by weight in biomass, respectively.Lipid content, on the other hand, could be as high as 50 percent, said Prof. Nacorda who is handling the purification process and media formulation for Chlorella. vulgaris.




UPLB scientists admit the prospects of research into the large scale production of algal fuel is compelling and almost imperative. But will the technology trickle down to the commercial users? The prospect remains uncertain and hard to project because the present national transport sector is very stringent. For now our modest goal is to use the (algae) oil in stationary and small engines of farm equipment. The Agricultural Machinery Testing and Evaluation Center (MTEC) is already testing it in power tools and slow moving machines.







That is why he and his research team are constantly exploring more opportunities including collaboration with private organizations to ensure that the technology will be fully developed and used in the country soon,  Demapelis said.

Third generation biofuels ? or just the idea of obtaining diesel from algae ? may still sound novel and having no place in the real world where the average motorist remains ambivalent or even indifferent to biofuels.

Prof. Demapelis, however, seems resolute in his vision; he can only see an exponential growth for this initiative. In three years we?ll probably have at least one pilot plant in Los Banos, he said. Just like an algal culture thriving inside a closed vessel, the growth and development of a third generation biofuels industry in the country will progress given the right conditions and orientation.
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    Sun September 26 2010 01:18:46 PM by Jacintha philipines  |  UPLB

    Korea-Philippines Algae-Bio-Ethanol Research Center

    There is confusion in this project. 
    The multi-million dollar bio-ethanol project that is to be put up in the province was allegedly not submitted for consultation with the previous Sangguniang Panalalawigan, and that the legislative body had been bypassed in the process. 
    This has come up as among the contentious issues regarding the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) inked by former Governor and now Second District Congressman Erico Aumentado with the Korean firm Biolsystems Co. Ltd.more  http://www.theboholstandard.com/bnews.php?issue=183&s1=3128&s2=3130&s3=3139&s4=949&s5=3137&s6=&s7=952&s8=950&s9=&s10=&s11=&s12=951&s13=&s14=&s15=
    Wed September 22 2010 04:51:15 AM by Jacintha 10 korea  |  philipines  |  research

    Maturation Ponds of algae

     The site talks  of the Influence of Algal Biomass on Tracer Experiments in Maturation Ponds. 
    Sun September 12 2010 03:10:09 AM by Jacintha algae growth

    Thailand serious about Algae Biofuel

    Sucess of palm oil has placed Algae Biofuel as an attractive option to the dept of Alternate Energy, Thailand.  They realize the crux is identifying the right algae.Two Universities, the Chanthaburi campus ofBurapha University, focusing on marine algae, and Kasetsart University, which is looking into freshwater algae,  are being sponsored by the Dept of Alternate Energy. 
    Sun September 12 2010 02:58:04 AM by Jacintha 52 Algae biofuel  |  Thailand

    Revamp Cell structure

    An article in the New York Times on Craig Venter has this to say,?Dr. Venter plans to create living creatures ,bacteria, algae, even plants designed from the DNA on up to carry out industrial tasks and displace the fuels and chemicals that are now made from fossil fuels.?


    ?Designing and building synthetic cells will be the basis of a new industrial revolution,? Dr. Venter says. The goal is to replace the entire petrochemical industry.

    Dr. Venter says his company will use more limited genetic engineering for its first algae-based biofuels.

    To read more of this article:?http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/05/business/05venter.html?src=busln

    Thu September 09 2010 09:56:36 AM by Jacintha 1 Craig venter  |  Dr venter  |  algae based biofuels

    3rd Algae world Asia !

    http://www.cmtevents.com/eventschedule.aspx?ev=101038&
    Thu September 02 2010 01:32:07 PM by Jacintha algae world  |  algae world asia

    Algae biofuel research - Bangok

    The Alternative Energy Development and
    Efficiency Department may fund research and development of biofuel from
    algae, says deputy director-general Twarath Sutabutr.




    Two universities are now conducting algae research - the Chanthaburi
    campus of Burapha University, focusing on marine algae, and Kasetsart
    University, which is looking into freshwater algae, said Dr Twarath.


    The department will provide financial support as well as act as a
    matchmaker between the two Thai universities and James Cook University
    and the Queensland University of Technology, two leading Australia
    research institutes, to share knowledge of marine technology.




    Thailand, a net importer of oil, should prepare for this situation
    by switching to alternative fuels as much as possible, he said.


    Burapha University has had research facilities and human resources in place since early this year but needs help financially.




    Maliwan Kutako, a lecturer with Burapha's marine technology faculty
    in Chanthaburi, said algae research was initiated last year with the
    engineering faculty, resulting in over 30 researchers from the two
    fields working on it.


    But the problem is that only Pinthong Engineering Co, a
    Bangkok-based engineering service provider, has supported us since the
    beginning, donating almost one million baht for R&D. That's not
    enough, she said.


    The Burapha team is currently studying 28 marine algae strains while developing algae-breeding technology.


    We've found a strain that can produce 100 litres of biofuel from 250
    tonnes of algae. To pursue this, we need more equipment and better
    technology, said Dr Maliwan.


    Algae strains in the laboratory were collected from the seacoast near
    the campus, as biofuel should ideally be produced from local materials.


    The campus is Thailand's only fully integrated algae R&D
    facility, combining a laboratory, a 100-rai algae breeding pond and
    researchers at one location.


    Bangchak Petroleum will test the quality of the algae biofuel next
    week, and the campus plans to build a production unit with a capacity of
    100 litres a day, said Dr Maliwan.


    http://www.bangkokpost.com/business/economics/193818/authorities-may-finance-algae-biofuel-research

    Thu September 02 2010 12:43:17 PM by Jacintha 25 bangok  |  Burapha University  |  Dr Twarath

    Direct Wet Algae to Biodiesel


    Researchers at the University of Michigan have published the feasibility of a two-step hydrolysis-solvolysis process to produce biodiesel directly from wet algal biomass, eliminating the need for costly biomass drying, organic solvent extraction and catalysts. The paper on the process was published in the ACS journal Energy & Fuels. 

    In the first step, wet algal biomass contained 80 percent moisture and was reacted with subcritical water to hydrolyze intracellular lipids, conglomerate cells into an easily filterable solid that retained the lipids and produced a sterile, nutrient-rich aqueous phase. In the second step, the wet, fatty acid-rich solids underwent supercritical transesterification with ethanol to produce fatty acid ethyl esters (FAEEs). The team used Chlorella vulgaris algae, which contained 53.3 percent lipid content. 
    Thu September 02 2010 04:40:19 AM by Jacintha 1 Algae biofuel

    Car of the Future

      Hey car lovers ,here is one that is easy on the environment.Novozymes, a biofuels company, showcased a Ford Fusion that runs on cellulosic E85 at the 7th annual World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology and Bioprocess held outside Washington, D.C. 
    Mon August 30 2010 04:25:19 AM by Jacintha 2 biodiesel car  |  novazyme