Sustainable Green Technologies (SGT) a start-up company in Escondido, California announced today that it has discovered a highly effective and low cost way to massively increase algal oil production. Metabolic engineering research conducted at SGT over the past two years paid off when SGT scientists uncovered the elusive and long sought after “lipid trigger” in green algae.
Escondido, CA, August 04, 2009 --(PR.com)-- Sustainable Green Technologies (SGT) a start-up company in Escondido, California announced today that it has discovered a highly effective and low cost way to massively increase algal oil production. Metabolic engineering research conducted at SGT over the past two years paid off when SGT scientists uncovered the elusive and long sought after “lipid trigger” in green algae. Usually algae store excess harvested solar energy in the form of starch and in smaller amounts as lipid droplets within their cells. But under certain ideal conditions, many microalgae appear to flip a switch to turn on massive production and storage of oils instead of starch. The true nature of this metabolic switch as well as the conditions which activate (or trigger) the switch remained elusive. Now SGT is able to activate the switch at will and to create “obese algae.” This breakthrough technology supports the U.S. Advanced Energy Initiative - which seeks to diversify the U.S. energy portfolio and to reduce dependence on foreign oil.
“We uncovered the algae oil lipid trigger almost by accident,” notes Dr. Elmar Schmid, SGT’s CSO. "We were looking for new and rational uses of a waste stream from our biohydrogen technology. We found the waste from our biohydrogen system sparked tremendous growth of our green algae, and more importantly, massively increased lipid production and storage within our algae. In other words, our algae became obese within one week! We now have a highly efficient, cost-effective way of producing large amounts of algae oils for biodiesel fuel production. On top of that, we can produce clean biohydrogen from the resulting biodiesel refinery waste!” exclaims Dr. Schmid.
SGT’s biohydrogen technology was developed by researchers at SGT isolating and characterizing hydrogen-producing microbes, SGT’s microbes can convert a variety of feedstock into biohydrogen energy, for example glycerol waste from biodiesel production, sugars derived from sugar cane and sugar beet, office paper once it is turned into glucose by enzymes, and from brewery wastes just to name a few. The biohydrogen is used in a fuel cell to produce electricity. SGT has applied for a grant from the Department of Energy to further develop this Algae oil and biohydrogen energy system.
About Sustainable Green Technologies
Sustainable Green Technologies, a leader in biofuels and biohydrogen development based in Escondido, California manufactures and distributes bio-energy systems and technologies. For more information regarding SGT’s products and services, please contact Jim Siegrist, VP Marketing and Sales at 760-522-3087 and visit www.sustainablegreentechnologies.com.
Contact: Jim Siegrist