High density algae production module – sustainable technology
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Letsgo Corp Barry Stewart
This innovation increases algae production over 1000% per sq foot vs open air ‘standard’ surface rates of less than 3/8” deep. A cluster of enclosed cellular tubes, each with a laminated custom wavelength light source, creates a constant ideal algae biomass growth environment.
This production module overcomes many of the principle commercialization challenges of conventional algae biomass production, which include:
- seasonal production - large water areas conversion to algae production, - algae genetic control - bio-mass collection systems for open water - sufficient production to make regional or on-site bio-oil extraction financially viable.
Base modules are 4 feet by 4 feet by 12 feet high [ nominal dimensions ]. Scalable module configurations make algae biomass factories viable. 2,000 sq. ft. of floor space becomes equivalent of 2,000,000 square feet. Higher ceiling structures can achieve even higher production densities. High lighting efficiency is achieved thru the sealed laminated thin film light source. The light source (photon emitter) utilizes phosphors selected to emit the wavelengths for optimum algae growth rate. The flat emitters ( think flat fluorescent tube ) provide lighting from both sides of the ½” flow tube and maintain the growth cycle at optimum conditions during the flow down the tube. The algae is never more than ¼” away from the light source, so the biomass never becomes too dense to continue growth due to lack of light.
A ‘factory’ profile would include an array of growth modules, a pumping system, process control and monitoring centre, bio-mass filtration unit, nutrient feed stock unit, purified water supply, building heat and electrical energy supply. Where factories produce sufficient raw bio-mass – or where regional bio-oil separation facilities are not available, a bio-oil separation unit would also be included in order to cost effectively transport the bio-oil to a refiner.
Normally the module would be orientated vertically with flow in a gentle downward direction. As the biomass increases it is drawn out thru a header and piped to a filtration unit to extract the majority of the algae. The remaining algae suspension is returned to the growth chamber for the next cycle.
This technology offers opportunities for Rural and Urban diversification and improved strategic oil supplies thru renewable sustainable technology. Mini algae bio-oil factories could fit into unused factories or even a “barn” – making algae bio-mass a replacement income for the rural milk & cream livelihood of decades past while complimenting farm activities. In a rural scenario, the feed nutrients are available and use of the ‘waste’ biomass fiber as fertilizer is applicable. Urban sources of algae nutrients have been identified by many researchers.
Viable, commercial mass production of algae makes the complete industry of algae bio-oil a national resource for any oil importing country.
I have a lab scale cell under construction for ‘proof of principle’ research [see sketch and photo].