Making diesel from Algae, by IIT Madras students


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An effort of group of students from IIT Madras, belonging to various engineering disciplines.

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  • Making diesel from Algae, by IIT Madras students

    1. 1. ALGIESEL
    2. 2. WHAT IS ALGIESEL? <ul><ul><li>Algiesel == Algae + Biodiesel. i.e making Bio diesel out of algae. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Biodiesel -> Fuel for Diesel engines created by the chemical conversion of animal fats or vegetable oils. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Algae -> Grows fastest among all photosynthetic organisms, require little or no land area(The perfect solution for the food vs fuel problem) </li></ul></ul>
    3. 3. HOW AND WHY ALGAE? <ul><ul><li>Yields more usable biomass, with higher lipid concentration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can be chosen to produce preferred lipids </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Grow in wide range of habitats, including freshwater, saltwater, sewage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lipid content can be manipulated by external conditions. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Basically we can engineer algae to work the way we need. </li></ul></ul>
    4. 4. AIMS OF THE PROJECT <ul><ul><li>To explore and demonstrate the feasibility of the process of extracting the diesel from the semi treated sewage water </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To grow a foreign species of algae in the pond water which is richer in lipid content than the wild algae already growing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Explore the feasibility of the process on a larger scale </li></ul></ul>
    5. 5. INITIAL PLAN OF WORK <ul><ul><li>Laboratory Phase: Techniques presently in use will be tested & optimized in laboratory, and most feasible techniques will be identified for the available conditions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Testing Phase: Techniques identified in the lab will be scaled up to the semi-pilot scales,  exposed to environmental conditions present and Improvements will be made as required </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Utilisation Phase: The process identified will be used to produce Bio-Diesel </li></ul></ul>
    6. 6. LAB PHASE <ul><ul><li>Algal strains as identified by previous experiments(for high lipid content) were tested for scale-ability </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Techniques to concentrate and extract the bio-mass were tested and optimised </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Process for the Extraction of Algal-oil is yet to be tested </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. GENERAL OVERVIEW OF DESIGN <ul><ul><li>Broadly speaking we have a flocculator that basically concentrates the biomass from the algae. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Then we have an extractor which will extract the oil out of biomass. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>This oil can be converted into diesel through a process called trans-esterification. </li></ul></ul>
    8. 8. FLOCCULATOR <ul><ul><li>Simply put, A set of batch-processes taking place in a few connected tanks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Includes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Introduction of Flocculant at the required amount </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Stirring/Mixing </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>pH monitoring and maintenance </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Removal of Water </li></ul></ul></ul>
    9. 9. FLOCCULATOR (contd.) <ul><ul><li>Input : any algae rich media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The algal concentration and strain determines the parameters of the flocculator, like amount of flocculant, pH required, water removal etc. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Results in </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Removal of up to 95% of water from the input </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Concentration of Biomass to 20 or more times the original concentration </li></ul></ul></ul>
    10. 10. EXTRACTOR <ul><ul><li>Process to extract maximum lipids (oil) from the concentrated biomass </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Includes: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Separation of biomass after concentration by: </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Crushing (Mechanical) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Ultra-sonic lysis of cells(Mechanical) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Solvent Methods (Hexane, Chloroform etc.) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
    11. 11. SCALE UP <ul><ul><li>Experiments to take the cultures from lab scale (2l) to well sustained, stable cultures of 200l(or more). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Experiments performed show that the chosen strains were in-capable of growing repetedly in high stress conditions as provided by the water. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Data available, from lab work on lipid contents and cell counts of different algal strains </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Problems which arose due to parameters such as salinity, temperature are yet to quantified and corrected through small lab-scale experiments.(Highly time consuming, hence of secondary importance) </li></ul></ul>
    12. 12. CURRENT STATUS <ul><ul><li>Algal Biodiesel is a very hot topic for research currently. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Many companies and reseach institutions are in the race to be the first people to produce biodiesel from algae commercially. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rigorous research is being carried out. </li></ul></ul>
    13. 13. SOME EXAMPLES <ul><ul><li>Royal Dutch Shell has invested in a 2.5 hectare pilot project and has plans to move to a 1000 hectare plant. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>N.I.O.T is working on a semi-pilot project on marine algae as a source of bio-diesel. </li></ul></ul>
    14. 14. DREAMS OF ALGIESEL <ul><ul><li>We want to develop such a plant which can work even in a village. </li></ul></ul>
    15. 15. BENEFITS OF ALGIESEL (contd.) <ul><ul><li>Algae can be grown anywhere and everywhere(even in the middle of the sea) so a lot of energy is there ready to be used. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Algal biodiesel is potentially one of the best answers to the energy crisis the world is currently facing. </li></ul></ul>
    16. 16. GREEN BENEFITS <ul><ul><li>Algae are photosynthetic they basically take in carbon dioxide and give out oxygen. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They make use of micro-nutrients present in the water(which are the same parts of waste water that have to be removed) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Say Hi! To algae and bye bye to the protests against green house gas emission. </li></ul></ul>
    17. 17. ECONOMICS OF ALGIESEL <ul><ul><li>The project in its current state is not feasible economically. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>We plan to get around 100ml bio-diesel and our budget will approximately be Rs.20,000. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>But this Rs.20,000 is mostly one time cost i.e. infrastructure and set up costs. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Discarding the set up costs the only expense we have is of flocculant and of course electricity costs. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To make 100 ml biodiesel we plan to spend: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Flocculant: Rs.35  </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Electricity Cost: Rs.3 (approx 1 unit of electricity ) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Yet to be estimated solvents(less than Rs.100) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>So to make 100 ml biodiesel we need Rs.140 approximately. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>  </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
    18. 18. ECONOMICS OF ALGIESEL (contd.) <ul><ul><li>Project is not immediately implementable. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Certain important aspects can make it feasible economically. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>  We are in the process of finding the  suitable strain of algae which gives more amount of oil and can grow in the given waste water. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The yield would increase to upto 3 times with the suitable strain, compared to the native strain. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>N.B.: We already have cultured a marine algae ( Chaetoceros parvus )which gives 3 times the yield. But, due to certain highly unstable factors such as temperature and salinity, scale up of this algae is less favourable. </li></ul>
    19. 19. BIODIESEL FROM ALGAE VS JETROPHA <ul><ul><li>Currently the main source of biodiesel is jetropha plants. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jetropha controversy. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>FOOD vs FUEL debate. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cost of production of biodiesel from Jetropha is estimated to be Rs.32/litre. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>This cost does not take into account the cost of land for  growing jetropha. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The (estimated)cost of production of the oil from algae(by the Algiesel team) is Rs. 1500/litre. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>So this process can be made economically feasible if thorough research is performed. </li></ul></ul>
    20. 20. TEAM Sagar Laygude Kousik S Chinmay Shukla Avaneesh T Praneet Kumat Durvasula Ashritha Pasupuleti Sai Shalini Mahak Singhal S Uma Maheswari Namrata G Kamat GUIDES Dr. Suraishkumar G.K, Biotech Dept. Dr. Shrikumar Suryanarayan, Biotech Dept. Dr. Ligy Philip, Civil Dept.
    21. 21. THANK YOU