Sapphire Energy and Linde expand partnership for algae-based crude
Mary Page Bailey
Sapphire Energy, Inc. (San Diego, Calif.; http://www.sapphireenergy.com/), a producer of algae-based crude oil, and the technology company The Linde Group AG (Munich, Germany; www.the-linde-group.com) announced they will expand their partnership to commercialize a new industrial-scale conversion technology needed to upgrade algae biomass into crude oil. Together, the companies will refine the hydrothermal treatment process developed and operated by Sapphire Energy at pilot scale. In addition, they will jointly license and market the technology into an expanded list of industries, including algae, municipal solid waste and farm waste, in order to upgrade other biomass sources into energy. The agreement spans a minimum of five years through the development of Sapphire Energy’s first commercial-scale, algae-to-energy production facility.
This growing partnership builds upon Linde’s and Sapphire Energy’s agreement to develop a low-cost CO2 management system for open-pond algae-to-fuel production, which was previously announced in May 2011. Linde also became the exclusive supplier of CO2 for Sapphire Energy's commercial demonstration, algae-to-energy facility in Columbus, New Mexico.