I D
× COMMENTARYCOVER STORYIN THE NEWSNEWSFRONTSCHEMENTATOR + Show More
Chemical EngineeringChementator Briefs
Ethylene dichloride Recently, Chemetry (Moss Landing, Calif.; www.chemetrycorp.com) and Braskem…
BUSINESS NEWSTECHNICAL & PRACTICALFEATURE REPORTFACTS AT YOUR FINGERTIPSTECHNOLOGY PROFILEENGINEERING PRACTICEEQUIPMENT & SERVICESFOCUSNEW PRODUCTS + Show More

Comment PDF Heat Transfer

A one-step process for extracting oil from algae…

By Edited by Gerald Ondrey |

Algae offer a ubiquitous, renewable source of oil for fuels and various chemical products ( CE, September 2008, pp. 22–25), but the extraction of oil from the algae cells is an energy-intensive process that involves dewatering and drying the biomass, followed by solvent extraction. Now, a one-step method that breaks the algae cells and liberates the oil without the need for dewatering or solvents has been developed by OriginOil, Inc. (Los Angeles; www.originoil.com). Riggs Eckelberry, the company president, says the process promises to cut energy costs by 90%, plus "substantial savings" in capital costs for solvent extraction. In the new method, algae ready for harvesting are pumped into an extraction tank through a static mixer, which induces cavitation in the water. Simultaneously, a low-power, pulsed electromagnetic field is applied to the algae-laden stream, and CO2 is introduced to lower the pH. The combination of these measures ruptures the cell walls and releases the oil, which rises to the surface in the tank while the biomass sinks. The final separation is achieved in a clarification tank. OriginOil devised the separation method as part of its process to produce biofuels from algae, which is still under development.…
Related Content
Biobutanol manufacturers merge
Green Biologics Ltd. (GBL; Abingdon, Oxfordshire, U.K.; www.greenbiologics.com), an industrial biotechnology company has merged with Butylfuel Inc., a U.S.-based renewable…

Chemical Engineering publishes FREE eletters that bring our original content to our readers in an easily accessible email format about once a week.
Subscribe Now
Top five technologies for drying in chemical applications
Crude distillation unit (CDU) optimization
Upstream Oil & Gas: Automation intelligence from wellhead to distribution
Metering gas in biogas plants
Wet process analyzer for FPD and solar cell manufacturing for semi-conductors

View More