UT’s OpenAlgae Technology
Reducing the cost of processing oil and biomass from algae requires a complete understanding of the entire algae process from species selection to separation. OpenAlgae’s development team has the broad range of backgrounds required to develop a complete system solution. OpenAlgae works closely with the multi-disciplinary development team based at the University of Texas-Austin to commercialize the technologies that will cost-effectively process algae to produce oil and useful byproducts.
Algae are the most efficient converters of solar energy by a factor of 10 due to their simple cellular structure and surface water interface. The cells grow in water, so they have more efficient access to dissolved CO2 in water as well as other nutrients. As there are over 30,000 identified species of microalgae, OpenAlgae has developed a proprietary low-cost algae processing solution that is largely species-agnostic. Finally, moving water is extremely energy inefficient and significantly increases the cost of any system; therefore, the ideal processing solution will be transportable and located alongside algae ponds to reduce the need to move water.