Latest Researches on Botryococcus braunii 41Botryococcus is a genus of green algae. Botryococcus braunii species has gained lots of interest among the scientific community and biofuel industries due to its ability to synthesize and accumulate huge amount of lipids. Many researches had demonstrated that the biodiesel produced using the oil extracted from these microalgae is identical to diesel fuel. I have summarized some of the latest algae biofuel researches using Botryococcus braunii.
Researchers at Tsukuba University, Japan, have studied the oil yield of algae using Botryococcus algae. They have found that Botryococcus can produce fuel that is almost identical to diesel. They have achieved a production target of 1,000 metric tons per hectare a year in a laboratory experiment. They have planned to reproduce that outcome at a 1.5 billion-yen ($16 million) open-air pilot project starting in September, 2010.
Korean researchers have done a project on "selection of microalgae for lipid production under high levels carbon dioxide" using Botryococcus braunii, Chlorella vulgaris, and Scenedesmus sp. The results of the project suggested that Scenedesmus sp. is appropriate for mitigating CO2, due to its high biomass productivity and C-fixation ability, whereas B. braunii is appropriate for producing biodiesel, due to its high lipid content and oleic acid proportion (nearly 55%).
University of Bologna, Italy, had proposed a new procedure to extract hydrocarbons from dried and water-suspended samples of the microalga Botryococcus braunii by using switchable-polarity solvents (SPS) based on 1,8-diazabicyclo-[5.4.0]-undec-7-ene (DBU) and an alcohol. The high affinity of the non-ionic form of DBU/alcohol SPS towards non-polar compounds was exploited to extract hydrocarbons from algae, while the ionic character of the DBU-alkyl carbonate form, obtained by the addition of CO2, was used to recover hydrocarbons from the SPS. DBU/alcohol exhibited the highest yields of extracted hydrocarbons from both freeze-dried and liquid algal samples (16% and 8.2% respectively against 7.8% and 5.6% with n-hexane). Login to Post a Comment