PHYCO2 and MSU pass Phase 1 in algae research project
April 20, 2016
he research partnership between PHYCO2, an emerging algae growth and carbon dioxide sequestration company, and Michigan State University (MSU) has announced test results in Phase I of their multi-year trial to capture manmade carbon dioxide and create renewable alternative energy feedstock. They recently reported that Phase I proved the PHYCO2 patented algae photo bioreactor (APB) can capture significant amounts of CO2 for high-density algae cultivation.
PHYCO2’s patented technology optimizes algae growth by managing the growth parameters: light, CO2 and nutrients. PHYCO2 also developed a system that analyses and regulates the specific amount of time that algae needs to be exposed to light, as well as the time needed to rest in order to properly cultivate.
Within the first round of testing, the two-month period showed an algae density of 1.7 g/L, a CO2 absorption rate of 52 percent, and a productivity rate of 0.34 g/l solution/ day.
Built in the T.B. Simon Power Plant, PHYCO2’s photo bioreactor absorbs CO2 emissions directly from the plant, creating pure algae strands that can be used for a multitude of products. The team is preparing for a second round of testing, in which the focus will be on doubling the algae density and reaching a productivity rate that is eight times the Phase I rate.
“With the strong industry-university collaboration, the integration of the patented PHYCO2’s reactor and MSU selected algal strains could lead to a soon-commercially-available solution to sequester CO2 and produce high-value chemicals. Co-locating the APB with the power plant allows the process to utilize waste heat from the power plant to dry and process the produced algae to further improve the energy balance,” said Dr. Susie Liu, an assistant professor in the Department of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering at Michigan State University.
“Results from Phase I testing demonstrates that our technology can be applied to manufacturers worldwide to reduce emissions, and create pure microalgae to be used as an alternate energy source, as we strive to create a market sustainable solution to address our environment without negatively impacting businesses,” said PHYCO2 CEO William Clary. “The next phases of testing will focus on how effective the photo bioreactor can be for power plants looking to reduce their carbon footprint, and how the technology can be implemented to absorb other airborne pollutants for further algae cultivation.”