[ad#PhycoBiosciences AIM Interview]
DOE awards UA-led team $8M for biofuel
October 3, 2013
The UA’s Algal Raceway Integrated Design, or ARID, system.
he University of Arizona (UA) is the lead institution for the Regional Algal Feedstock Testbed, or RAFT, partnership, which was recently awarded $8 million over four years by the Department of Energy (DOE) to research how algae can be grown year-round outdoors in open ponds in different climates. In addition, other researchers and companies will collaborate with the research team to develop harvesting and conversion processes to produce biofuels and bioproducts.
“Our job is to figure out how we take algae and turn it into biofuels, bioproducts and feed in an economically sustainable way. We want to make a biofuels industry in America,” said University of Arizona’s Kimberly Ogden, chemical and environmental engineering professor, the UA’s primary investigator on the RAFT project.
Texas A&M AgriLife is working with UA to optimize algal growth systems to yield more biomass and lipids, develop methods of recycling and reusing water, and experiment with methodologies for growing various algae strains.
The majority of the research will be done using UA’s Algal Raceway Integrated Design, or ARID, system, which was designed and patented by Ogden’s research partners Randy Ryan, of the Arizona Agricultural Experiment Station, part of the UA College of Agriculture and Life Sciences; Pete Waller and Murat Kacira, of the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering; and Perry Li, of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. The research team also includes Judy Brown, a professor in the UA School of Plant Sciences.
“Part of the goal of this grant is to better understand the relationships between flow rate, nutrients, pH, temperature and algal productivity so we can optimize system performance and have an automated system,” said Ogden
“To tackle the problem of large-scale production of algae for fuels and other products, we need to have a better understanding of everything from the biology to the interfacing with existing petroleum processing plants,” Ogden added.
The UA’s contribution to this project focuses on water usage and quality issues, plant biology, reactor design and the production of various algae strains for advanced testing.
Copyright ©2010-2013 AlgaeIndustryMagazine.com. All rights reserved. Permission required to reprint this article in its entirety. Must include copyright statement and live hyperlinks. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org. A.I.M. accepts unsolicited manuscripts for consideration, and takes no responsibility for the validity of claims made in submitted editorial.
From The A.I.M. Archives
— Refresh Page for More Choices
Algae.Tec has announced that, with the completion of the US$1M injection by Gencore, their nutraceutical plant upgrade in Cummings, Georgia, is progressing ahead of sched...
Stavanger, Norway-based Skretting, a 100+ year-old leader in the manufacture and supply of aquaculture feeds for fish and shrimp, has announced that they are now offering...
Jill Fehrenbacher writes in inhabitat.com that when it comes to design, Mother Nature has a lot to teach us. The field of Biodesign has emerged as an exciting new discipl...
Dr. Tom Dempster works as a research professor – focusing on strain selection and development, biomass production, algal biofuels and high-value products, and air and was...
Joy Lanzendorfer reports for NPR that, as seaweed continues to gain popularity for its nutritional benefits and culinary versatility, more people are taking up seaweed fo...
Researchers at Iowa State University, in Ames, Iowa, are developing technology, using algae, that improves the efficiency of wastewater reclamation. The system uses verti...