An interesting idea on ethanol and oil from algae

An interesting idea on ethanol and oil from algae

Postby cacofonix » Sat Jan 24, 2009 7:15 am

I was going thru Oilgae blog posts when I came across this comment on one of the posts.

"I had a thought that maybe brighter minds than mine could consider (or already have.) Instead of fermenting for ethanol after the oil extraction consider fermentation before oil extraction. It would seem that the process of fermenting the microalgae before the extraction of the oil may break down the cell walls which would free the oil. The stock and water could then be removed through filtering, settling, centrifuge, or something. The ethanol could be distilled out leaving the oil ready for biodiesel conversion. I read somewhere that ethanol could be used in place of methanol and this process would/could provide the source of the ethanol."

I must admit I don't know how this works...anyone here can throw more light on this? Thanks
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Re: An interesting idea on ethanol and oil from algae

Postby Mubs » Tue Sep 07, 2010 5:59 am

Hi,
fermentation with yeast wouldnt even come close to breaking down algal cell walls.
most strains of yeast do not have the correct enzymes to break down cellulose cell walls.
the algae would just get in the way.
if anything, it would actually compete with the yeast for nutrients thereby hindering the fermentation process if any sugar is present in the bioreactor.

Hope this helps,
Mubs
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