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Algae-based Carbon Capture Technology - Status and Trends 7

Atmospheric CO2 levels have risen due to fossil fuel combustion, and are the major reason for global warming. This has made every single country to put some considerable efforts to reduce carbon emissions, and is the driving force behind the new technologies that are emerging for carbon capture and storage. The conventional CO2 sequestration processes like geological sequestration are highly power-intensive and as a result, expensive. Algae-based CO2 capture offers a cost effective carbon capture system and also solves another major problem for many countries: Imported fuel dependency; algae-based CO2 mitigation strategy has the potential to obtain valuable products at the end of the process, one of which is biofuels.

Several researches have been attempted in recent years to grow algae using CO2 from power plant emissions, cement plant emissions and distilleries emissions. But all these efforts are in pilot stages. All these efforts face a number of challenges such as cost, technical feasibility etc. Another major challenge is the land availability for algae-based CO2 capture system near a power plant. A 300 MW power plant could require as much as 8,000 acres of cultivation area to capture the CO2 emitted. There are other significant challenges as well. Unless we decipher ways to grow more algae in less space at a much lower cost, algae-based CO2 capture cannot be commercialized.

Currently, there are a number of research efforts and few major collaborations working to commercialize algae-based carbon capture technology. Large companies such as Duke Energy, the third largest electric power holding company in the United States are working on this carbon capture technology. A number of universities have started taking a special interest in biological forms of carbon capture, including using algae as the bioremediation agent. Government policies, especially in the US and Europe, have also started supporting the growth of algae-based carbon capture technology.

If the challenges associated with Algae-based carbon capture technology are addressed sucessfully, the technology will present a solution not only to the global warming issue but also to the fuel demand.
Fri April 16 2010 03:23:51 AM by Parkavi Algae-Carbon-Capture 2395 views

Comments - 5

  • Algal wrote:
    Sat April 17 2010 06:22:49 AM

    I have solved the problem , please see www.algalsolution.com

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  • Mahesh wrote:
    Tue April 20 2010 03:47:24 PM

    If 1kg of algae, (for ex spirulina)is grown in open pond using atmospheric CO2, how much of CO2 is consumed(i.e cosumed from environment)? like per kg of biomass that is obtained!!!!!!!!!

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  • Parkavi wrote:
    Wed April 21 2010 08:08:06 AM

    Normally to produce 1 kg of algae 1.8 kg of CO2 will be required.

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  • Glsimiane wrote:
    Fri April 23 2010 03:24:41 PM

    The accepted rule is 2 tons of CO2 gives 1 ton of biomass and 40 gals of vegetable oil.

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  • Mahesh wrote:
    Mon May 10 2010 04:38:08 PM

    Great....... So algae consumes almost double the volume of CO2 than it's biomass yield.... In the recent conference on biofuels which was in delhi, i heard that, 1 acre of forest consumes 2-3 tons of carbon, 1 acre of farm consumes 2 tons, whereas algae grown in a acre can consume 16-17 tons...!!!
    How true is this?????

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