Stellarwind Bio Energy, LLC, a producer of fuel oil from algae, announced on March 16 the opening of its new small scale pilot production facility and corporate headquarters in Indianapolis, Ind.
Leveraging two years of research, design and development, the new headquarters will allow the company to build a scaled pilot production facility deploying its PhycoGenic Reactor and PhycoProcessor.
Unlike corn which produces between 150-330 gallons of ethanol per acre per year, or soy that produces between 70-100 gallons of bio-diesel per acre per year, algae can produce in excess of 10,000 gallons of fuel oil per acre annually. In addition, the oil produced is far superior to ethanol or bio-diesel, in that it can be sent directly to a refinery for conversion into gasoline, kerosene or aviation fuel, the company says.
"For years, science has known that algae are a far better producer of fuel oils than other biological sources. The problem has been to cost-effectively build a bioreactor that can inexpensively grow, harvest and process commercially viable quantities of fuel oil from algae. We are committed to deploying such a system," says Will Kassebaum, CEO of Stellarwind Bio Energy.
The PhycoGenic Reactor is based on a proprietary approach which will allow the company to grow algae at a very affordable cost per liter. The technology is being designed for high scalability, simple construction and easy maintenance. Keith Masavage, EVP of Marketing and Business Development summarizes; "Our holistic approach uses four basic components; our PhycoGenic Reactor, PhycoProcessor, RecyCO2Tron, and Resource Recovery System. First, carbon-dioxide is acquired from any major greenhouse-gas producer such as power plants or manufacturing facilities using our RecyCO2Tron. This CO2 is fed into the PhycoGenic Reactor which continuously grows and harvests the algae.
The harvested algae are fed into the PhycoProcessor which extracts the oils. Residual bio-mass is fed into our RSSTM process which can convert it into one of several valuable resources including methane, industrial grade charcoal, fertilizer and/or synthesis gas.