Producing chemicals from waste with algae

Mark Randall, T2 Energy, Vista, California, USA

Challenge area: Sustainable alternatives to our current technologies

T2 Energy works extensively to turn waste into sustainable energy and chemicals using algae technology. Its innovative, patented algal bioreactor and on-site power plant emission capture methods are just part of their bio-based solutions. Waste heat from power plants is used to complete algae processing to extract lipids.

The team’s growth enhancer is a game-changer for non-GMO freshwater strains. Used in combination with the bioreactor, up to 1000x more biomass per volume is generated: each cell is 10-20x larger than in naturally occurring algae. With a 50/50 split of lipids to biomass, oleic acid stands at 50%.

Innovative algal processing results in a carbohydrate and protein-rich cell wall, as well as triglyceride and fatty acid esters. These green raw materials have many applications, such as adhesives, biolubricants, motor oil, biocrude, UV cured coatings, polymers, powder coatings and feed for aquaculture and livestock.

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