The SOFCOM Turin demonstration plant will includea photbioreactore for the growth of algae. The algae will be first used for treating the SMAT WWTP waste water and then sent back to the digester.
Besides this particular use, it is well known that other opportunities are available for the algae use, such as the biofuels productions.
BioAlma (biofuel from algae for sustainable mobility in urban areas) is an Italian project dedicated to the improvement of the potential impact in terms of energy and environmental implications of biofuel production from algae.
The project lasts two years and began in March 2012. The leader is Politecnico di Torino (Department of Environment, Land and Infrastructures Engineering).
Funded in 2012 , the project has now approached the survey related to the production of biofuels from microalgae taking advantage of the previous experience of the participants. For this reason, looking at the most recent evidence of the industry and the outcomes of the European project " BioAlgaeSorb " (FP7), the initial investigation for the production of biodiesel has been updated to the production of bioethanol from microalgae in order to investigate a method for the growth able to provide a better yield of ethanol in the process of conversion. The choice of bioethanol was dictated by the fact that this energy source can replace every gasoline (premium and super unleaded) or it can be used in combination with conventional gasoline in widely varying proportions .
The project has led to the development of a model for LCA and energy aspects of the production chain, modeling the system using objective functions single and/or multi- criterion .
This model enables:
- the development of energy and environmental improvement scenarios
- the comparison of different energy carriers
- the evaluation of the use of biofuels in the field of urban mobility, providing important information for policy and approach regarding the use of biofuels from microalgae than fuels from fossil fuels.
Further information, partnership, results and reports can be found on the BioAlma website: