Microalgal production systems: global impact of industry scale-up

Stephens, Evan, Wagner, Liam, Ross, Ian and Hankamer, Ben (2012). Microalgal production systems: global impact of industry scale-up. In Clemens Posten and Christian Walter (Ed.), Microalgal biotechnology: integration and economy (pp. 267-306) Berlin, Germany: Walter De Gruyter. doi:10.1515/9783110298321.1

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Author Stephens, Evan
Wagner, Liam
Ross, Ian
Hankamer, Ben
Title of chapter Microalgal production systems: global impact of industry scale-up
Title of book Microalgal biotechnology: integration and economy
Place of Publication Berlin, Germany
Publisher Walter De Gruyter
Publication Year 2012
Sub-type Research book chapter (original research)
DOI 10.1515/9783110298321.1
ISBN 9783110298277
Editor Clemens Posten
Christian Walter
Chapter number 15
Start page 267
End page 306
Total pages 40
Total chapters 15
Language eng
Formatted Abstract/Summary
Microalgal biotechnology has been commercially viable for several decades, but
only for a restricted range of applications (Benemann et al. 1987). Owing to the
relatively high capital cost of microalgal production systems, successful applications
have generally focussed either upon niche areas in which both modern agriculture
and microbial fermentation systems lack a competitive advantage or upon
unique microalgal products, for which no competition exists. Although the largest
existing algae farms are still for health food production (e.g. Spirulina production
in China) and natural products (e.g. Dunaliella in Australia for β-carotene), those
undergoing the most rapid expansion are currently aimed at biofuel production
and associated R&D. The microalgal industry is growing rapidly, and while microalgal
biofuel technologies generally remain in the basic and applied R&D stage
(IEA 2011a), commercial-scale facilities are starting to come online. For photoautotrophic
production, these include Sapphire Energy’s 120ha (300ac) Integrated
Algal Biorefinery (IABR) facility currently under construction in New Mexico,
USA (Sapphire 2011; US D.O.E. Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy 2011), while
Solazyme’s factories have focused on heterotrophic conversion of sugars to oils
and other products (Solazyme 2011; Dillon 2011). [extract]
Q-Index Code B1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Book Chapter
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Created: Tue, 18 Dec 2012, 09:18:49 EST by Dr Liam Wagner on behalf of School of Economics