Microalgae efficiently produce high-quality oil through photosynthesis using energy captured from sunlight and carbon dioxide. The oils, once extracted, can be converted into fuels such as green diesel, bio-jet and biodiesel. The remaining biomass can be used in food and feed applications.
The unique advantages of algae include:
Biological Efficiency: Microalgae are naturally occurring, single-celled organisms. They are extremely efficient at converting sunlight and simple nutrients into energy. For commercial oil production, microalgae have a faster growth rate and higher oil yields than species of other larger algae.
High Energy Balance: Algal biodiesel has a substantially higher energy balance than biodiesels produced from food crops such as soy, palm and canola. This is because fossil fuel consumption plays a minor role in algae production and a major role in the cultivation of food crops. (Energy balance refers to the amount of energy yielded from fuel minus the amount of energy required to produce fuel.)
Carbon Mitigation: As part of the natural photosynthetic process, microalgae consume carbon dioxide when they grow. In fact, microalgae thrive on a high concentration of CO2. Solix's Lumian AGSTM Technology can use the exhaust from power plants and other industrial sites in the algae's growth cycle, leaving cleaner air in the process.
Water Conservation: The Lumian AGS Technology uses only a small amount of water to operate compared to the irrigation requirements of traditional food crops and first generation biofuel feedstocks.
Land Use: Microalgae production does not compete with agriculture food crops for land. The Lumian Technology uses a closed system that does not require soil; it can be implemented on arid land that is not suitable for agriculture use.
A Multitude of Useful Products: The microalgae production process generates products with multiple uses. The organic matter remaining after the oil has been extracted can be used to produce food ingredients including proteins, animal and fish feed, ethanol and methane, as well as chemical intermediates for bio-plastics, surfactants and lubricants.