April 8, 2010

RIL considering feasibility study on algae-derived biofuel

Feasibility study of algae as an alternate feed stock for biofuels should be undertaken as a part of meeting challenges for biofuels in India, a top Reliance Technology group official has said.

“Algae seems to be the most promising feed stock. Microalgae are uncellular biofactories that can provide oil from sunlight and carbon dioxide,” M. Ganapati, President, Corporate Planning, Reliance Technology Group told PTI after delivering a talk on ‘Biofuels Scenario in India’

Algae oil can be used to make bio-diesel or other refinery feed stocks, he said.

“Critical Research and Development objective should be to promote premium quality fuel from Algae at a cost competitive with petrol and diesel,” Mr. Ganapati said.

Mr. Ganapati also hinted at RIL considering a proposal on setting up of a biofuel refinery. He also said that the government should offer tax incentives and selective investment grants to biofuels which will facilitate the update of biofuels. He stressed the need on required dedicated R&D for the development of second generation biofuels.

“There should be demonstration of technology for second generation biofuels. Another factor for meeting challenges in biofuels is availability of feed stocks, collection storage, logistic Jatropha plantation, high yield variety development and harvesting, technology among others,” Mr. Ganapati added.

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