MacroFuels aims to produce advanced biofuels from seaweed or macro-algae. The targeted biofuels are ethanol, butanol, furanics and biogas.
Seaweed does not need fresh water, arable land or fertilizers to grow, which provides environmental benefits, and in addition has a high carbon dioxide reduction potential. The technology offers many novel opportunities for employment along the entire value chain.
MacroFuels plans to develop a technology for the production of fuels which are suitable as liquid fuels or precursor thereof for the heavy transport sector as well as potentially for the aviation sector.
The project goals are:
• increasing the biomass supply by developing a rotating crop scheme for cultivation of seaweed, using native, highly productive brown, red and green seaweeds. Combined with the use of advanced textile substrates this is planned to result in a year round biomass yield of 25 kg seaweeds (wet weight) per m2 per year harvested at 1000m2/hr
• improving the pre-treatment and storage of seaweed and to yield fermentable and convertible sugars at economically relevant concentrations
• increasing the bio-ethanol production to economically viable concentrations
• increasing the bio-butanol yield by developing novel fermenting organisms which metabolize all sugars at 90% efficiency for ethanol and butanol
• increasing the biogas yield to convert 90% of the available carbon in the residues
• performing an integral techno-economic, sustainability and risk assessment of the entire seaweed to biofuel chain