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CSU, NREL Lead $2.1Mn CO2 Utilization for Algae Biofuels R&D (R&D)
Colorado State University,NREL
Date: 2018-10-31
Following up on our October 4, 2017 coverage, a team of five Colorado State University (CSU) and three National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) researchers are reporting a $2.1 million, 3-year effort to increase algae yield for biofuel production by improving carbon dioxide utilization. For the research, New Belgium Brewing will provide CO2 from their fermentation processes, and Qualitas Health, a producer of omega-3 nutraceuticals from algae, will help test the improved CO2 delivery technology. The aim is to improve delivery of CO2 to algae and enhance algae's consumption of the CO2.

The project is being funded by the U.S. DOE Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy in a collaborative effort to improve the cost-competitiveness and environmental sustainability of microalgae-based fuels and products. (Source: CSU, NREL, Various Media, Oct., 2018) Contact: Colorado State University, Prof. Ken Reardon, kenneth.reardon@colostate.edu, www.colostate.edu; US DOE BETO, energy.gov/eere/bioenergy/bioenergy-technologies-office

More Low-Carbon Energy News Colorado State University,  NREL,  Algae,  CO2,  Biofuel,  


Cellulosics Beat Corn Ethanol for Climate Impact, says Study (R&D)
Colorado State University
Date: 2018-03-16
A new study from Colorado State University is breathing new life into the concept of biofuels produced from native switchgrass as a better feedstock than corn and other cereal and oilseed crops for biofuel production.

The researchers used modelling to simulate various growing scenarios, and found a climate footprint ranging from -11 to 10 grams of carbon dioxide per megajoule -- the standard way of measuring greenhouse gas emissions. By way of comparison, the impact of using gasoline results in 94 grams of carbon dioxide per megajoule. According to John Field, research scientist at the Natural Resource Ecology Lab at CSU, "What we saw with switchgrass is that you're actually storing carbon in the soil ... you're building up organic matter and sequestering carbon." "They (switchgrass) don't require a lot of fertilizer or irrigation. Farmers don't have to plow up the field every year to plant new crops, and they're good for a decade or longer," Field added.

The study was published online Feb. 19 in Nature Energy. (Source: Colorado State University, Manitoba Co-operator, 12 Mar., 2018) Contact: Colorado State University Natural Resource Ecology Lab, John Field, (970) 491-1604, www.ecology.colostate.edu

More Low-Carbon Energy News Cellulosic,  Swithgrass,  Biofuel,  Biofuel Feedstock,  


Arizon Univ Funded for Biofuels, Bioproducts R&D (Funding, R&D)
University of Arizona, Institute for Energy Solutions
Date: 2017-10-20
In Tuscon, the University of Arizona Institute for Energy Solutions reports receipt of up to $15 million over 5 years in grant funding from the USADA National Institute of Food and Agriculture to lead a new center focusing on the mass production of biofuels and bioproducts in the U.S. Southwest.

The center will research guayule and guar, perennial desert shrubs that produce natural rubber and organic resins, as potential feedstocks for developing biofuel and high-value bioproducts such as rubber, polysaccharide and resin. Bridgestone Americas, Colorado School of Mines, Colorado State University, New Mexico State University and the USDA Agricultural Research Servic are partnering in the research project. (Source: University of Arizona Research, Discovery and Innovation, Oct. 16, 2017) Contact: University of Arizona, Institute for Energy Solutions, Kimberly Ogden, Dir., (520) 621-2211, https://energy.arizona.edu

More Low-Carbon Energy News University of Arizona,  Biofuel,  Biofuel Feedstock,  Bioproducts,  Biochemical,  


CSU Funded for Better Algae Biofuels R&D (Funding, R&D)
Colorado State University
Date: 2017-10-04
Colorado State University scientists are reporting receipt of as much as $3.5 million over three years in US DOE Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) funding for Rewiring Algal Carbon Energetics for Renewables aimed at improving how algae-based biofuels and bioproducts are made. The overall project goal set by the Department of Energy is to double the yield of biofuel precursors from algae to about 3,700 gallons per acre per year.

Strategies to be used by the team to meet this goal include increasing algal cultivation productivity, optimizing biomass composition, and extracting and separating different types of algal lipids to reduce the cost of upgrading them to renewable diesel.The study will be led by scientists at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado.

The researchers will use an algae species called Desmodesmus armatus, and will focus on fundamental processes of efficiently channeling carbon dioxide into useful fuel intermediates. The project will work to ferment carbohydrates in the algal cells into chemicals of interest, including ethanol, as well as a fuel precursor called 2,3 butanediol.

Other partners on the project will work on the algae-to-bioproduct life cycle, including modification of growing pond conditions, and separating algal solids from water to remove lipids.

The multidisciplinary team includes CSU's Ken Reardon, professor of chemical and biological engineering; Graham Peers, associate professor of biology; and Jason Quinn, assistant professor of mechanical engineering; along with partners at National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Colorado School of Mines, Arizona State University, Utah State University, and representatives from industry. San Diego-based Sapphire Energy is a project partner and has pioneered the use of D. armatus for biofuels. (Source: Colorado State University, PR, 2 Oct., 2017) Contact: Colorado State University, Prof. Ken Reardon, kenneth.reardon@colostate.edu, www.colostate.edu; US DOE BETO, energy.gov/eere/bioenergy/bioenergy-technologies-office

More Low-Carbon Energy News Colorado State University,  Sapphire Energy,  Algae,  Algal Biofuel,  BETO,  


DOE Reports Additional $8.8Mn for Algae Tech. Innovations (R&D)
DOE ,BETO
Date: 2017-09-11
The U.S. Department of Energy is reporting the selection of four additional projects from the Productivity Enhanced Algae and ToolKits funding opportunity to receive up to $8.8 million for projects that will deliver high-impact tools and techniques for increasing the productivity of algae organisms in order to reduce the costs of producing algal biofuels and bioproducts. The funding for this initiative now totals over $16 million.

The organizations selected include:

  • The Colorado School of Mines, in partnership with Global Algae Innovations, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Colorado State University, will improve the productivity of wild algal strains using advanced directed evolution approaches in combination with high-performance, custom-built, solar simulation bioreactors;

  • The University of California, San Diego, will develop genetic tools, high-throughput screening methods, and breeding strategies for green algae and cyanobacteria, targeting robust production strains;

  • The University of Toledo, in partnership with Montana State University and the University of North Carolina, will cultivate microalgae in high-salinity and high-alkalinity media to achieve productivities without needing to add concentrated carbon dioxide;

  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory will ecologically engineer algae to encourage growth of bacteria that efficiently remineralize dissolved organic matter to improve carbon dioxide uptake and simultaneously remove excess oxygen. (Source: US DOE BETO, www.energy.gov/eere/bioenergy/bioenergy-technologies-office

    More Low-Carbon Energy News DOE BETO,  Algae,  Algal Biofuel,  Algae Biofuel,  

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