Demonstrations of large-scale algae biofuels production have already occurred. Over 8 tons of algae biomass have been produced at Cellana’s six-acre Kona Demonstration Facility (pictured above) for testing in biofuel and other applications. Thousands of gallons have been manufactured by fermentation for the US Navy as it develops a “green fleet” that can operate on domestically-produced alternative fuel. Pilot plants are slated to go online in Florida, Hawaii, Iowa, and elsewhere in the country throughout 2012.
In recent months, algae companies have had many achievements in the area of commercial production. In mid-2011, for example, Sapphire Energy broke ground on a 300 wet-acre project in Columbus, New Mexico that will begin operations in 2012, and produce 1 million gallons of algae biofuels per year when it reaches full capacity. Phycal, Inc. has been awarded a grant from the US DOE to help support its purchase agreement from the Hawaii Electric Company to supply algae-based fuel for power generation. Solazyme has won a contract to supply algae-based biofuels to the US Navy.
Industry snapshot with Mary Rosenthal, ED, Algal Biomass Organization
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