Oilgae Comprehensive Report

Introduction to this topic

All aspects of extraction of oil from algae are discussed

Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby uncle » Wed Jun 25, 2008 10:11 am

Hi alg1,

Can you post some kind of pictures of your present work?

If possible, relate the pictures to a process so everyone can understand better.

This will be encouraging for everyone to follow in your footsteps.

:mrgreen:
uncle
 
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Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby uncle » Wed Jun 25, 2008 10:12 am

Hi alg1,

Can you post some kind of pictures of your present work?

If possible, relate the pictures to a process so everyone can understand better.

This will be encouraging for everyone to follow in your footsteps.

:mrgreen:
uncle
 
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Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2008 9:55 am

Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby Al G. Guy » Wed Jun 25, 2008 9:00 pm

Hi guys. Nice forum you've set up.

I don't have any experience with algae or in the oil business. I'm an R&D guy at a company that produces coatings and adhesives; I'm thinking of trying my hand at a few "side" projects with algae, maybe see what I can come up with.

My question is, when do you think algal biofuels will be ramped up to full scale production sufficient to become a force in the petroleum markets? Are we looking at two years? Five? Ten? I'm very interested how this will shake out with the whole peak oil mess.

-- Mike
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Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby bowyer » Thu Jun 26, 2008 4:48 am

I love the idea of algae to oil. I am a new poster and these ideas may have been covered. You can increase the area of algae growth by growing vertically. I know this is not an original idea but many seem fixated on ponds possibly due to cost but growing vertically can be done by using clear plastic which has welded seams so the water can be pumped around then into the seperation area then repumped. It might be done on a small scale using old shower curtains and pumped up and using some garden pipe squirted onto the screen. The screen can then be scraped and the algae seperated from the water as well. This helps with aeration too.
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Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby StormWalker » Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:44 am

Hi Guys,

I first saw the concept of using algae as a the basis of diesel over 20 years ago on a TV Program called Tomorrows World, I was 15, these days I am a Systems Engineer working in London for a defense company and I drive a very very thirsty car (in the UK we are paying £1.17 per letter).

I have had a look into the viability of algae, and I want to investigate the fundamentals consider:

The energy from 1 M square of solar radiation from the sun creates 1000 Watts of energy.

Photosynthesis as a biological process harnesses the suns energy at an efficiency of 3% to 6%, therefore the algae would trap say 45 Watts per M square.

So:

I think if you have to pump this stuff around vertically to get the best from the land the plant is stationed on then you are going to incur losses in terms of watts to run the electrical pump.

Say you have 45 Watts of energy then from 1 M square what do we have to do in terms of energy to get this 1 M. Does any one know or has any one got any good ideas on how to work it out?

By the way I think this is a sensible discussion not trying to shout any one down, I have tried many things over the year some have tried some haven’t I would never criticize anyone for trying such an interesting venture.
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Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby Auditor #9 » Sat Jun 28, 2008 1:52 pm

StormWalker wrote:The energy from 1 M square of solar radiation from the sun creates 1000 Watts of energy.

Photosynthesis as a biological process harnesses the suns energy at an efficiency of 3% to 6%, therefore the algae would trap say 45 Watts per M square.

So:

I think if you have to pump this stuff around vertically to get the best from the land the plant is stationed on then you are going to incur losses in terms of watts to run the electrical pump.

Say you have 45 Watts of energy then from 1 M square what do we have to do in terms of energy to get this 1 M. Does any one know or has any one got any good ideas on how to work it out?


StormWalker have you factored time into your calculations above or does that really come in it ? I'm pretty green about algae/oil production but find the idea of it compelling as it seems to favour the small scale as this guy describes in his blog

http://ergobalance.blogspot.com/2008/04 ... ctors.html

How long does it take for the algae to grow and produce oil ? I'm wondering whether vertical arrangements would speed up the growth because they are maximising the light and area. 1 M square in a pond at what depth ? The surface algae cuts off the light from getting to the algae below so a vertical arrangement maximises light and area. It depends on the Time though, to get a good picture of the efficiency. Please correct me if I'm wrong here but collecting 45W of energy per metre per hour ? or day ?

I wonder could gravity be used in the pump so as to minimise the energy usage. Anyway, is anyone able to calculate how much water a 45 watt pump is able to push around ? You could always rig up your children to a pump and exercise bikes and get them cycling for their supper... (think of all the energy going to waste in the local gym :o )
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Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby gemini_muj » Sat Jun 28, 2008 6:40 pm

hiya guys,

this is my first post so please go easy :D

My name is Muj and i am a biodiesel manufacturer based in London, UK. for a few years now i have been looking at the possibility of using Algae as the feedstock for biodiesel. I was wondering if anyone would be able to advise me on which species of algae has a good to high yield of oil and where to buy it from. also, does the refinary have to be located near a source of CO2 or can you use other sources of CO2?

Would anyone be interested in help me on the contruction side of this project?

thank you

Muj
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Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby StormWalker » Sun Jun 29, 2008 12:52 am

Auditor #9,

To be really efficient you need only enough water for the algae to float on. Light you see will only penetrate the first 6mm (1/4 inch) and depending on the amount of light you have and Co2 then the development of algae will vary, however you have to assume 20 days? Alg1?, So you would harvest your 45W every 20 days. I would also like to point out that you need things other than light water and CO2, you need nitrates as well, all plants do and probably other algae foods also?.

With the vertical system you would have to pump the through every 20 days then, you certainly would not want to keep the pump on all the time.
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Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby hogg » Tue Jul 01, 2008 11:03 am

Great site! Thanks.
I've been interested in Algae Diesel for at least three years.
I wanted to set up here on my little place, but never ran across any directions or step by step proceedures.
Also some info on how big to start with.
Local farmers hereabouts might be interested in participating if this looks productive and cheaper than buying the $4.40/Gal stuff.

My idea was to put up a Fence line of Clear Tubes, or maybe a Roof line of clear tubes to grow the Algae.
However I dont know what to do next. How to collect the Algae and what to do with it after the collection.

So I need to be pointed to some pictures and some instructions.

So C'mon back, you guys who know what I need to know, and lets get started!
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Re: Introduction to this topic

Postby alg1 » Tue Jul 01, 2008 3:40 pm

I will try to take pictures.I have 2,125 gallon stock tanks with aquarium aerators in them with a fluorescent shoplight over head.After trying different algaes,I chose Nannochloropsis sa,fast growing plus good oil yield.Just put up a 12x12x6inch deep outdoor pond ,just 2x6's and an old pondliner and it is doing great with two aerator pumps.Started out with a 10 gallon aquarium,sea salt,shoplight,and aerator.Bought algae from Aquatic Ecosystem but Ward Science sells also.Building CHEAP outdoor raceway ponds with clear 4 mil covers should produce oil at a dollar a gallon.
Solar cells are efficient,however I look at algae as solar storage that is cheap.Algae can be a food,Co2 eater,produce gasoline,diesel,dyes,plastics,etc.Twenty days is a good growth estimate,I always 1/2 my culture to start a new culture.Fertilizer should be used sparingly.Youtube has a good video on refining oil by heating the oil,just like a petro version.MY opinion the research is over,tweeking production systems will produce quality oil at a reasonable cost.
Oilgae is a good source of info and this forum will help solve any problems,but production should be proceeding.Petrosun,GSPI,Vertigro,Solazyme,Livefuels,etc are starting a new industry,which I believe will replace crude oil on a COST basis.I believe pricing will be go/no go on algae fuels.
Good Luck,if you need help,post,and we will try to answer,Dan
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