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Title: A perspective on renewable bioenergy from photosynthetic algae as feedstock for biofuels and bioproducts

Abstract

There has been substantial technical progress in developing algae-based bioenergy in recent years and a large part of industry and academic research and deployment projects have pivoted away from a pure biofuels strategy. This letter summarizes the findings of a recently completed, comprehensive report, that represents a collaborative effort of at least 20 co-authors, where we analyzed the prospects for using microalgae and macroalgae as feedstocks for biofuels and bioenergy production. The scope of this report includes a discussion of international activities advancing bioenergy and non-energy bioproducts from algae, progress on the use of macroalgae (both cast and cultivated seaweeds) for biogas applications, distinct biochemical and thermochemical conversion pathways, multi-product biorefining opportunities, as well as a thorough review of process economics and sustainability considerations. It is envisioned that a higher value algal biomass-based bioproducts industry will provide the additional revenue needed to reduce the net cost of producing algae-based biofuels. As such, a biorefinery approach that generates multiple high-value products from algae will be essential to fully valorize algal biomass and enable economically viable coproduction of bioenergy. Furthermore, to accelerate the implementation of algae-based production, minimizing energy, water, nutrients and land use footprints of integrated algae-based operations needs to bemore » a primary objective of larger scale demonstrations and future research and development.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
OSTI Identifier:
1358333
Report Number(s):
NREL/JA-5100-68539
Journal ID: ISSN 2211-9264
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Algal Research
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 24; Journal Issue: PA; Journal ID: ISSN 2211-9264
Publisher:
Elsevier
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
09 BIOMASS FUELS; algae; biomass; conversion; biofuels; bioproducts; biorefinery; sustainability

Citation Formats

Laurens, Lieve M. L., Chen-Glasser, Melodie, and McMillan, James D. A perspective on renewable bioenergy from photosynthetic algae as feedstock for biofuels and bioproducts. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1016/j.algal.2017.04.002.
Laurens, Lieve M. L., Chen-Glasser, Melodie, & McMillan, James D. A perspective on renewable bioenergy from photosynthetic algae as feedstock for biofuels and bioproducts. United States. doi:10.1016/j.algal.2017.04.002.
Laurens, Lieve M. L., Chen-Glasser, Melodie, and McMillan, James D. Sat . "A perspective on renewable bioenergy from photosynthetic algae as feedstock for biofuels and bioproducts". United States. doi:10.1016/j.algal.2017.04.002. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1358333.
@article{osti_1358333,
title = {A perspective on renewable bioenergy from photosynthetic algae as feedstock for biofuels and bioproducts},
author = {Laurens, Lieve M. L. and Chen-Glasser, Melodie and McMillan, James D.},
abstractNote = {There has been substantial technical progress in developing algae-based bioenergy in recent years and a large part of industry and academic research and deployment projects have pivoted away from a pure biofuels strategy. This letter summarizes the findings of a recently completed, comprehensive report, that represents a collaborative effort of at least 20 co-authors, where we analyzed the prospects for using microalgae and macroalgae as feedstocks for biofuels and bioenergy production. The scope of this report includes a discussion of international activities advancing bioenergy and non-energy bioproducts from algae, progress on the use of macroalgae (both cast and cultivated seaweeds) for biogas applications, distinct biochemical and thermochemical conversion pathways, multi-product biorefining opportunities, as well as a thorough review of process economics and sustainability considerations. It is envisioned that a higher value algal biomass-based bioproducts industry will provide the additional revenue needed to reduce the net cost of producing algae-based biofuels. As such, a biorefinery approach that generates multiple high-value products from algae will be essential to fully valorize algal biomass and enable economically viable coproduction of bioenergy. Furthermore, to accelerate the implementation of algae-based production, minimizing energy, water, nutrients and land use footprints of integrated algae-based operations needs to be a primary objective of larger scale demonstrations and future research and development.},
doi = {10.1016/j.algal.2017.04.002},
journal = {Algal Research},
number = PA,
volume = 24,
place = {United States},
year = {Sat Apr 15 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Sat Apr 15 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

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