2015/16 Michigan State University Test Program Goals:

PHYCO2 and MSU Staff initiate testing at the T.B. Simon Power Plant
  • Algal Production Rates
  • CO2 absorption from boiler flue gas
  • Energy Use
  • Algae Production Cost
  • Water consumption

Phase 1 Results – Natural Gas Boiler

  1. 2 months of operation with no culture issues.
  2. Algae density of 1.7 g/l.
  3. No water added during two months of testing.

Phase 2 Results – Coal Boiler

  1. The waste water from harvesting can be re-used in the process to reduce water consumption and nutrient addition.
  2. Water consumption is about 1%/day.
  3. Developed biofilm cleaning process
  4. Based on testing of the algae, biomass from both natural gas and coal fueled boilers are acceptable for up to 10% by volume addition to cattle feed.  The algae are high in protein and essential amino acids.

Phase 3 Results – Natural Gas Boiler

  1. Implemented an improved bio-film cleaning process.
  2. Harvest Trials
    – 20%  sustainable harvest concentration ~ 0.83 g/L @ 0.167 g/L/day
    – 30%  sustainable harvest concentration ~ 0.62 g/L @ 0.187 g/L/day

Phase 4  Tests – Natural Gas Boiler

  1. Higher light intensity increases algae growth rates.
  2. Stable and sustainable algae production was demonstrated with the Algae Photo Bio-reactor (APB).
  3. The algae consume phosphates and nitrates continuously, though at different rates. The process is limited by the phosphate consumption for waste water treatment processes.
  4. The LED’s are a large energy consumption point for the system
  5. CO2 sequestration rates are tied to the algae production rate and volume of the reactor.
  6. Pilot plant designs suggest algae production can be scalable, reliable, and yield algae product for sale at or below $20/kg.
  7. Achieved 3.75 g/l density in reactors and growth rates up to 0.48 g/l/day.