Aurora Algae in Australia announced the successful completion of requirements for a AU$2 million grant awarded by Australian government.
The Low Emissions Energy Development grant has been used to advance Aurora Algae’s demonstration facility in Karratha, Western Australia and enabled the company to develop a pilot facility comprised of six one-acre ponds. The pilot plant is capable of producing 12-15 tonnes of algal biomass per month.
According to Aurora Algae, the grant helped the company develop cost-effective, efficient methods for growing, harvesting and extracting algae. With the completion of the pilot project the resulting algae can be used to develop a variety of product lines.
“Aurora Algae’s project has multiple benefits—it does not compete with food production as some biofuel sources do and has beneficial by-products that help offset biofuel production costs,” said Australia Environment Minister Bill Marmion.
“The completion of the project underlines the importance of the LEED fund in supporting the development of new, low emissions technologies and renewable energy supplies to reduce the State’s carbon footprint.”
Aurora Algae has plans to break ground on a commercial facility in 2014. That facility would be located in Maitland (WA) and consist of 100 ha of algae ponds, which could produce a combined 600 tonnes of biomass each month.