Tag Archives: Spirulina ?

SPIRULINA

SPIRULINA

photo         by       CCRES      SPIRULINA
Spirulina   is simply  the  world’s most  digestible  natural  source  of  high quality  protein,  far  surpassing the  protein bio availability of even beef  ( which  most  people  consider  to  be  th e  #1 source of  protein ). The  digestive  absorption  o f  each  gram  of  protein  in  spirulina  is  four  times  greater  than  the  same  gram  of   protein   in   beef.  And   since   spirulina   already   contains   three   times   more   protein  ( by  weight )  to   begin   with,   the   net result is   that  , ounce   for   ounce, spirulina   offers   twelve   times   more  digestible   protein     than   beef.
That’s   an astounding   difference.
 
photo         by       CCRES      SPIRULINA
 It   means    that   spirulina   is   the   ideal  food  source   for   people   working  to  get   more  protein   into  their diets :
•  People on low-carb, high-protein diets.
• People who exercise vigorously or engage in strength training.
• People who are frail, who have trouble gaining weight, or who are malnourished.
 
photo         by       CCRES      SPIRULINA
In   fact,   there’s   probably   no  better single food  source  on  the  planet  than  spirulina  for  these  people.  The  protein   found   in  spirulina   is  also   a complete  protein,  meaning   that   it  contains  all eight  essential   amino acids, unlike  beans, whole   grains   and other  plant- based   foods   that   typically   lack  one  or  more  amino acids.
 
photo         by       CCRES      SPIRULINA
CCRES ALGAE PROJECT
 part of 
Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources (CCRES)
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CCRES ALGAE

  •  CCRES ALGAE
  • Algae represent the third generation feedstock for biodiesel, with much higher yields than second generation crops. Algae yields could reach a high of 50 T of biodiesel per hectare year against 2 T for competing feedstock such as Jatropha.
  • While biodiesel is the fuel end product that is pursued most, algae can be processed to yield other energy products such as ethanol, diesel, gasoline, aviation fuel, hydrogen and other hydrocarbons. Some companies have started exploring production of these products as well.
  • Upstream processes such as strain selection, cultivation and harvesting present challenges that are unique to the algae industry and hence deserve closer attention.
  • Microalgae, owing to their relatively high oil content can be a feedstock for biodiesel while macroalgae is a potential feedstock for ethanol.
  • From over 30,000 strains of algae available, selecting the most suitable strain needs evaluation of parameters such as desired end products, oil/energy yields, performance in mass culture, complexity of structure, culturing media/environment and more.
  • In harsh environments such as deserts, photobioreactors might be the most suitable method to grow algae, owing to the control they offer on the external elements.
  • Costs of setting up and operating a photobioreactor for algae cultivation would be much higher than open ponds, but photobioreactors provide higher efficiency and oil yields. While open ponds costs about $100,000 per hectare in capital costs, photobioreactors cost about $1-$1.5 million per hectare – ten times as much as open pond! On the other hand, photobioreactors provide much higher control for algal monocultures and provide yields that are 3-5X those for open ponds.
  • Currently, photobioreactor costs range between $70-150/m2. Some of the most important research efforts currently being undertaken are for reducing the capital and operational costs for photobioreactors.
  • Ensuring high yield, providing optimal light penetration and cost effective aeration are some of the key challenges in microalgae cultivation.
  • In order to benefit from the advantages of photobioreactors and open ponds, some companies are exploring a hybrid cultivation system that uses both open ponds and PBRs.
  • Key challenges for cultivating microalgae in wastewater include the availability of large amounts of wastewater, prevention of contamination of desired strains, and cost-effective harvesting.
  • Photobioreactors might be the most suitable system to grow algae in deserts, owing to control they offer on the harsh environment present in the region.
  • Algae are already being cultivated in oceans for non-fuel end products such as cosmetics, medicines and food additives.
  • Using freshwater for algae cultivation is likely to be more expensive than using wastewater or salt water, as large quantities of freshwater might not so easily accessible, and nutrient credits might not be applicable for cultivation in fresh water.
  • While algae-based CO2 capture at power plants has excellent innate potential, such an activity is not expected to become commercialized until 2015.
  • Key challenges to this include large land requirements next to power plants, inefficiencies in the actual CO2 capture process and high costs of cultivation should photobioreactors be used.
  • Oilgae estimates that the current production costs for algae based biodiesel is about $18 per gallon if photobioreactors were used.
  • Companies that have come up with unique concepts for algae biofuels include Algenol, AlgoDyne, Blue Marble Energy, Inventure, Sapphire Energy and Solazyme.
  • As of Mar 2010, there are about 100 companies worldwide that have a focus on algae fuels.
  • While there are no dominant designs in the industry, there are entry barriers in the form of large financing requirements and the need for high end scientific expertise.
  • There could be some challenges faced while converting algae oil into biodiesel using the transesterification process, owing to the high Free Fatty Acid (FFA) content of algae oil.
  • Prominent methods currently used for harvesting microalgae are filtration, centrifugation, and flocculation.
    • Centrifugation and flocculation are expensive harvesting methods, but these are expected to have the most potential in future for harvesting microalgae.
    • The operational cost of centrifugation for algae harvesting varies from $100 to $500 per ton of algae biomass.
  • Companies are trying to overcome the challenges faced by the open pond system such as contamination, light penetration and water evaporation by using a hybrid algae product system – cross between open and closed system. For instance, the company GreenStar has introduced a hybrid of open-air and closed bioreactor system that combines the controlled environment of a closed photobioreactor with the inexpensive construction of an open pond system.
  • Algae in Bioremediation – Significant efforts are being undertaken for the use of algae in waste water treatment, and as a source of carbon capture from power plants, cement factories etc.
    • Research is going on with regard to harvesting microalgae growing in sewage and industrial wastewater. Dissolved air flotation and filtration have shown promise in the research done so far.
    • For power plants and other entities that are large scale emitters of CO2, sequestering CO2 using algae provides the opportunity of monetization through carbon credits while at the same time producing biofuels.
  • About 100 companies are pursuing the production of fuels from algae. Pilot projects undertaken by some of these companies suggest that algae could provide over 10,000 gallons of biodiesel per hectare per year.
  • Algae – both microalgae and macroalgae – have non-fuel applications that cover diverse industries. The food, health products and nutraceutical markets are the largest among these.
  • Prominent industries that have synergetic benefits from producing algae fuels are industries that either produce waste water or deal with treatment, power plants and cement plants that are large emitters of CO2, companies in the agriculture industry, poultry & cattle industry, and existing producers of non-fuel algae products such as nutraceuticals or animal feed.
  • The global biodiesel industry is projected to grow and touch around 14.4 billion gallons by 2015, from 5 billion gallons in 2009.
  • Venture capitalists are fully aware that algae energy is a high risk- high return domain, and that only companies that are willing to take big efforts to solve the problem have a chance of winning. Hence, they look for companies and teams that are trying to solve the problem by thinking big.
  • CCRES ALGAE project of CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES (CCRES)
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Using algae for reducing the CO2

 

 

Algae live on a high concentration of carbon dioxide and nitrogen dioxide.  These pollutants are released by automobiles, cement plants, breweries, fertilizer plants, steel plants. These pollutants can serve as nutrients for the algae.

 

When fuels are burned there remains, besides ash, a certain number of gas components. If these still contain combustion heat, they are called heating gases. As soon as they have conveyed their energy to the absorbing surfaces of a heat exchanger, they are called flue or stack gases.

It further contains a small percentage of pollutants such as particulate matter, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides and sulfur oxides.

Carbon dioxide (CO2)

—the primary greenhouse gas responsible for global warming—along with other pollutants.
Its composition depends on what is being burned, but it usually consists of mostly nitrogen (typically more than two-thirds) derived from the combustion air, carbon dioxide (CO2) and water vapor as well as excess oxygen (also derived from the combustion air).

Using algae for reducing the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere is known as algae-based Carbon Capture technology. The algae production facilities can thus be fed with the exhaust gases from these plants to significantly increase the algal productivity and clean up the air.  An additional benefit from this technology is that the oil found in algae can be processed into a biodiesel. Remaining components of the algae can be used to make other products, including Ethanol and livestock feed.

This technology offers a safe and sustainable solution to the problems associated with global warming.

CCRES SPIRULINA

project of

Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources (CCRES)

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Cultivation of Algae

Cultivation of microalgae can be done in open systems (lakes, ponds) and in controlled closed systems called photo-bioreactors (PBR).

Open cultivation systems use ponds or lakes with added mechanical equipment to grow microalgae. Open ponds were the first cultivation technology for mass cultivation of microalgae. In this system water levels are kept no less than 15 cm, and algae are cultured under conditions identical to their natural environment. The pond is designed in a raceway configuration, in which a paddlewheel circulates and mixes the algal cells and nutrients.

Open cultivation system for growing algae

The raceways are typically made from poured concrete or they are simply dug into the earth and lined with a plastic liner to prevent the ground from soaking up the liquid. Baffles in the channel guide the flow around the bends in order to minimize space. The system is often operated in a continuous mode, where the fresh feed (containing nutrients including nitrogen phosphorus and inorganic salts) is added in front of the paddlewheel, and algal broth is harvested behind the paddlewheel after it has circulated through the loop. Depending on the nutrients required by algal species, several sources of wastewater can be used for algal culture. For some marine-type microalgae, seawater or water with high salinity can be used.

Raceway ponds growing algae

Although open ponds cost less to build and operate than closed systems using PBRs, this culture system has its disadvantages. The ponds can be built on any type of land but need large land areas for considerable biomass yield. Because they are in the open air, the water levels are affected from evaporation and rainfall. Natural CO2 levels in the atmosphere (0.03%-0.06%) are not enough for continuous mass growth of microalgae. Biomass productivity is also limited by contamination with unwanted algal species, organisms that feed on algae or other poisonous particles. Only few species can be grown in normal conditions.
Other types of construction use: 1) circular ponds where circulation is provided by rotating arms; 2) inclined systems where mixing is achieved through pumping and gravity flow.

Closed cultivation systems use PBRs – containers made of transparent materials for optimised light exposure. Enclosed PBRs have been employed to overcome the contamination and evaporation problems encountered in open systems. These systems are generally placed outdoors for illumination by natural light. The cultivation vessels have a large surface area-to-volume ratio. The most widely used PBR is a tubular design, which has a number of clear transparent tubes, usually aligned with the sun’s rays. The tubes are generally less than 10 centimeters in diameter to maximize sunlight penetration. The medium broth is circulated through a pump to the tubes, where it is exposed to light for photosynthesis, and then back to a reservoir. A portion of the algae is usually harvested after it passes through the solar collection tubes, making continuous algal culture possible.

In some PBRs, the tubes are coiled spirals to form what is known as a helical-tubular PBR. These systems sometimes require artificial light for energy, which adds to production costs.  Either a mechanical pump or an airlift pump maintain a highly turbulent flow within the reactor, which prevents the algal biomass from settling. The photosynthesis process generates oxygen. In an open raceway system, this is not a problem as the oxygen is simply returned to the atmosphere. In closed PBRS, the oxygen levels will build up until they inhibit and poison the algae. The culture must periodically be returned to a degassing zone—an area where the algal broth is bubbled with air to remove the excess oxygen. Also, the algae use CO2, which can cause carbon starvation and an increase in pH. Therefore, CO2 must be fed into the system in order to successfully cultivate the microalgae on a large scale.
PBRs require cooling during daylight hours, and the temperature must be regulated at night as well. This may be done through heat exchangers located either in the tubes themselves or in the degassing column.
The advantages of enclosed PBRs are obvious. They can overcome the problems of contamination and evaporation encountered in open systems. The biomass productivity of PBRs can average 16 times more than that of a traditional raceway pond. Harvest of biomass from PBRs is less expensive than from raceway ponds, because the typical algal biomass is about 30 times as concentrated as the biomass found in raceways. Controlled conditions in closed systems are suitable for genetic modification of algae cells and enable cultivation of better quality species (e.g. microalgae with higher oil content).
However, closed systems also have disadvantages. Technological challenges with PBRs are: overheating, bio-fouling, oxygen accumulation, difficulty in scaling up, cell damage by shear stress & deterioration and expensive building & maintenance. Light limitation cannot be entirely overcome because light penetration is inversely proportional to the cell concentration. Attachment of cells to the tubes’ walls may also prevent light penetration. Although enclosed systems can enhance biomass concentration, the growth of microalgae is still suboptimal due to variations in temperature and light intensity.
R&D in algae biotechnologies focus on developing innovative PBR designs and materials. Different developed designs are: serpentine, manifold, helical and flat containers. From these elevated reactors can be oriented and tilted at different angles and can use diffuse and reflected (artificial) light for growth. More specific information is available in PBRs section.
After growing in open ponds or PBRs, the microalgae biomass needs to be harvested for further processing. The commonly used harvest method is through gravity settlement or centrifuge. The oil from the biomass is extracted through solvent and further processed into biodiesel.

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AQUACULTURE, AQUAPONICS, CCRES AQUAPONICS, KOI, Slatkovodne Ribe, SPIRULINA, UZGOJ RIBA

CCRES ALGAE

CCRES ALGAE

 We are committed to overcoming the world’s impending economic and environmental constraints with technology that produces sustainable, affordable, and local bio-based products from algae.

Algae hold great promise in the near term to fundamentally change America’s energy portfolio, sequester or convert atmospheric CO2 into market-ready products, and help grow our economy through the creation of tens of thousands of well-paying green-collar jobs. Algae-based jobs include:

Based on a survey conducted by the Algal Biomass Organization in January of 2010 with 52 reporting companies, a likely estimation of job growth is shown in the chart below as Scenario 1. In addition, based on the same survey, with the addition of regulatory and legislative parity in the US, accelerated job growth could occur as estimated Scenario 2.

Algae-based products and processes:

  • Can replace a significant percentage of America’s petroleum-based liquid transportation fuel, including jet fuel, gasoline and diesel, using photosynthetic and non-photosynthetic processes;
  • Are domestically produced and renewable;
  • Consume enormous amounts of CO2, and biologically sequester or beneficially reuse/convert atmospheric and industrial CO2into marketable products;
  • Can be grown in non-potable water, on non-agricultural land (thereby avoiding indirect land use issues).
  • Will be commercially produced in the near-term; low-carbon, drop-in transportation fuels will be produced by CCRES members within two years.
  • Can provide value-added co-products, including nutraceuticals, animal feed, cosmetics, plastics and other bio-based products, while also creating renewable, sustainable fuels.

World Ticker

World Population Estimate
7,003,790,794
03/30/2012 12:40 UTC

25% of fish are overexploited.
50% fully exploited.
37,701,652,877,614,190
Cubic feet since 1750 AD

2007? 2025? Never?
Many experts say it’s here.
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Uncategorized

The Life of Algae

This video from Sapphire Energy tracks the cultivation of algae from their San Diego lab in microscopic images, to petri dishes, to flasks, and then outside in their Las Cruces, NM facility and into 14′, 40′, 100′ and half-acre ponds. This is the path that many thousands of strains have taken as Sapphire refines their library of commercial strains that will be used in their Green Crude Farm or Integrated Algal BioRefinery (IABR) now under construction in Columbus, NM. At the Green Crude Farm, the world’s first commercial demonstration scale algae-to-energy facility, algae will be cultivated in ponds over 2 acres in size.
CCRES SPIRULINA
 part of 
Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources (CCRES)
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AQUACULTURE, AQUAPONICS, CCRES AQUAPONICS, Slatkovodne Ribe, SPIRULINA, UZGOJ RIBA

Answer to Fuel & Food Crises

Aaron Baum at work. All photos courtesy of The Algae Labby Alice C. Chen 

Microscopic spinning orbs and spirals of green goo are the answers to our planet’s energy crisis and arable land shortage. At least that’s what Aaron Baum, a 40-year-old Harvard graduate and Stanford PhD, has concluded.
And Baum should know. After a mid-life crisis of sorts, he spent months researching the types of science that would most benefit the world and concluded that algae are it. Now, he wants to share his passion with the public by creating communities of people with their own algae farms. Imagine that – you can have a personal algae tank that provides fresh, ultra-nutritious food on a year-round basis.
Baum is a research consultant for NASA’s OMEGA project, whose mission is to create massive amounts of algae for biofuel, fertilizer and food. The San Rafael, California algae-phile knows not everyone has access to professional grade equipment – which can cost tens of thousands of dollars – so Baum has started teaching seminars on how to raise spirulina inexpensively and in one’s own home. The day-long workshops cost $150 and he’ll also provide you with a kit that includes a tank, spirulina starter stock, a nutrient mix and other equipment for $200. Through these workshops, Baum hopes to continue forming a collaborative community that shares knowledge about algae farming.

The seminars grew out of Baum’s first venture in algae. In 2008, he created what he says was the world’s first communal algae farm. The project was based in Berkeley and consisted of more than a dozen 55-gallon tanks of algae. It eventually got so massive that it would’ve required full-time staff, so Baum closed it down when he traveled around the world last year to attend algae workshops and visit algae farms. When he returned, he thought it would be more manageable to have the farms in people’s homes. I talked with him about his adventures in algae, and his plans for the future
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Alice Chen: How did you get interested in algae?
Aaron Baum: As a scientist, I’m completely committed to doing good things for the environment. I earned my Phd in applied physics from Stanford in 1997 and worked for several years in Silicon Valley as a program manager on technologies I developed in graduate school. I realized I was working my butt off to make computer chips run faster. I kind of lost faith in what I was doing.
I dropped out of that field, worked as an artist for several years and realized I miss science — the intellectual challenge and making contributions and changing peoples’ lives. I decided to get back into science on my own terms.
I thought about it for a long time and decided I wanted to work in a field where I could be sure I was doing something good for the world. I started doing a lot of research four years ago and after a few months, algae started to stick up out above everything else. Back then if you searched for algae, what came up was how to kill algae and how bad it was because of algae blooms. That was happening for a while but now it’s exponentially worse. I started working in that area. Now if you search for algae (online), about half of what you find is good.
AC: What’s so great about algae?
AB: Algae is a way to grow really high quality food in a small area, on the surface of a body of water or in wastewater. Or you can grow algae in dilute urine which is an easy way to get the right nutrients and reduce your impact on the environment.
Most marine biologists consider that the number one danger to marine life is eutrophication, an excess of nutrients in the water from agricultural runoff due to application fertilizer. When it hits the ocean or lake, there are massive algae blooms. When they decay, they wipe out oxygen and everything dies.
If you can find a way to keep nutrients out of water, you reduce the size of dead zones. You can create controlled algae blooms, harvest algae and eliminate nutrients that way. Or you can take wastewater, give it to algae directly and absorb nutrients. You come out with clean water, fuel, food, fertilizer and extra oxygen. And on a small scale in your own house if you grow it in dilute urine, you reduce the fertilizer load on the local ecosystem.
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AC: Tell me about algae as food. Why are people so into it?
AB: The idea was first proposed in the 1930s in Germany. They were trying to develop it for growing food. You can grow a lot of food in a small area. It’s extremely nutritious on a gram-for-gram basis. You can mix it in with other food. It didn’t take off until spirulina in the 1970s. Now there’s chlorella.
Normally you get spirulina in a powder or pill form. It’s grown in large outdoor ponds normally, and you sieve it out of water. It’s kind of special. It grows in corkscrew filaments making it relatively easy to strain out of water using a special fabric. Most other kinds of algae are too small and roundish, very difficult to filter.
Algae as a food is extremely healthy. It’s high in complete protein, antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, and it’s effective against infections. It has defenses against viruses and you can acquire defenses as well. It’s good to protect against environmental toxins. There were dozens of experiments where they fed rats a regular diet and another group with spirulina. They exposed them to mercury, lead, pesticides, radiation and mutagens and found that spirulina-eating rats do much better.
In powder form, spirulina’s great, but when you want to eat a blueberry, you don’t want it powdered. You want it fresh. You can eat fresh spirulina that’s basically alive. It tastes better.
AC: What does it taste like?
AB: The problem with most algae is it tastes like seaweed. A lot of people are not turned on by that taste. I think it’s really good in certain dishes. When you eat it live, fresh, the taste is much lighter, creamy, and buttery. You can spread it on crackers. We mix it with brown rice and guacamole so it’s vegan. The easiest way is in carrot juice.
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AC: Is anyone else doing what you’re doing?
AB: We’re at the very beginning of growing it. A few people have worked on it. Some people in France grow spirulina on a small scale in their house. Outside of France, there’s been very little work. I’m not aware of anyone in the U.S. working on it other than us.
AC: Why haven’t more people already started growing algae in their homes?
AB: There are technical barriers. You need to grow live spirulina. You need a seed reactor, a nutrient mix to put in the water and a special cloth. You must maintain proper balance between acidity and alkalinity, and the proper temperature. What I’m doing is putting together a kit to provide live spirulina.
AC: How is this a communal project?
AB: I’m starting out by building the community and showing people how they can do it themselves. We’ll do it together and share information through our website.
Previously we built a whole algae lab all based on volunteer labor. We built it for about 1,000 times less money than what we spend in places like NASA. What we’re aiming to do is cultivate algae based on free material. We grow algae and are investigating it as fertilizer, biofuel, and growing it in dilute urine.
We’d like to create an international network of people growing all kinds of algae in their homes in a small community scale, sharing information, doing it all in an open source way. We’d be like the linux of algae – do-it-yourself with low-cost materials and shared information.
I get emails from all over world. There’s been a huge wave of interest in algae, driven by biofuels and by the growing awareness of the lack of farmland. If you want to make new farmland, you have to destroy ecosystems. The biggest impact humans have on the world is through agriculture. If we want to grow more food so people can eat better, we either destroy the last remaining ecosystems on the planet or find a new way to do things.

AC: What’s the market like for spirulina?
AB: The world consumes about 100,000 tons of spirulina a year. It’s used for animal feed and it’s a nutraceutical (that is, a food that provides health benefits). It’s kind of expensive, usually about $80 per pound for powder. It’s a very nutrient dense food. When I eat spirulina – I eat vegan – I don’t have cravings for meat or sugar. Food is more satisfying when it has spirulina. I eat a lot, 15 grams a day. Most people would consider 5 grams a day to be fairly high. If you’re eating 10 grams a day, you’re spending about $200 a year on it.
AC: How did you transition into algae as a career?
AB: I got interested in algae and decided to create an algae farm project at Burning Man in 2007. I got together a community of people and we created an installation on a trailer. We had 16 bioreactors with live algae that was eating the exhaust of a generator. They grew great – it was very successful. We had a lot of educational material. There were big posters jammed full of text explaining what we were doing and why it was interesting.
I’ve worked at the Exploratorium. They’ll tell you that anything beyond one to two sentences, there’s no way you’re going to get anyone in the public to read anything more than that. On the night of the Burn, the craziest night of all with partying and dancing, I went to the installation. We had forgotten to turn the lights on. In the dark, I was surrounded by people all using headlamps, leaning close and reading every single word we’d written. As soon as they knew I was part of it, they started peppering me with questions. A guy from NASA was inspired by this project and then joined the OMEGA project. And then he gave me a call.
LabBench

AC: What are you doing for NASA?
AB: We’re developing large-scale systems that are combining biofuel and fertilizer production with wastewater treatment and production of fresh air and fresh water. We’re using large membrane enclosures floating in bodies of water. It’s a low-energy, low-resource way of growing algae.
One budding thing of NASA technology – we’re working on a clever way of removing algae from water.
We’re focused on the biofuel aspect at NASA. For biofuel, you want a species that produces a lot of oil. Many species of algae can produce huge amounts of oil — they can be more than 50 percent oil by weight, compared to normal plants that only produce a few percent.
Algae can produce about 100 times more than typical oil plants like soybeans, on a per acre basis. You can grow enough algae to replace all of the fossil fuel in an area that’s small enough to be manageable. You don’t need to use farmland, there’s not much remaining in the world ready to be used, and you don’t need fresh water. The nice thing about algae is while they cleans water and air, they can produce very valuable things like fuel, fertilizer and food. They’re precursers for bioplastics, cosmetics and medicines.
It’s a new kind of farming, potentially very low impact and sustainable.
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AC: So what’s your vision — to see every household have algae?
AB: I don’t see why not. It should be easier than a vegetable plot. Algae is such a super food. It’s so productive on a daily basis that with one tank in a window you can significantly supplement the diet of one person. If you use a whole window, you could probably do two to three tanks year round and have even more. Every day you could be eating algae.
Algae is an incredible resource we haven’t tapped into. Human beings haven’t gone there yet because it’s microscopic. I didn’t know what algae were until quite a bit later in life. They don’t really teach you about it in school. It produces approximately 70 percent of the oxygen we breathe. It’s the basis of 95 percent of life that’s in oceans.
Even people with no dirt can grow fresh food for themselves. If you’re in an apartment complex on the 25th floor, you can still grow fresh food.

Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources
 special thanks to 
Alice C. Chen 
 

Alice C. Chen developed her storytelling skills while exploring the Amazon Rainforest as an undergraduate at Stanford University. She went on to earn her master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill and is now an award-winning journalist.
Alice has nearly a decade of experience across media and has produced stories for the web, print, TV and radio. Her pieces have appeared everywhere from the San Francisco Chronicle to BNET and Newsweek.com. Alice’s specialties include business and health care reporting, and she’s also interested in narrative writing, profiles and inspirational stories.
Previous to Alice’s freelancing career, she was an education reporter at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, one of the largest daily newspapers in the country. Alice resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.

More info about AlgaeLab on
 http://www.algaelab.org/
CCRES SPIRULINA 
project of 
Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources
(CCRES)
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AQUACULTURE, AQUAPONICS, CCRES AQUAPONICS, KOI, Slatkovodne Ribe, SPIRULINA, UZGOJ RIBA

Algae Competition: The Future of Algae

A Global Challenge to Design Visionary Algae Food and Energy Systems

Landscape Designs • Production Systems • Food Development

“How will growing algae change the world and improve our lives?”

Participants represent projects in 40 countries and have submitted amazing entries. Visit the exhibits.

The Future of Algae video introduces twenty visionary entries in the Competition. Beginning with algae pond systems and photobioreactors today, this video looks into our future, exploring emerging themes, schemes and dreams in algae architecture and landscape design.

More info at:  http://www.algaecompetition.com/

Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources special thanks to  Robert Henrikson and Mark Edwards
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AQUACULTURE, AQUAPONICS, CCRES AQUAPONICS, KOI, Slatkovodne Ribe, SPIRULINA, UZGOJ RIBA

Why choose Spirulina?

What is Spirulina?

 

 

Spirulina is 100% natural and a highly nutritious micro salt water plant. It was discovered in South American and Africa in natural alkaline lakes. This spiral shaped algae is a rich food source. For a long time (centuries) this algae has constituted a significant part of the diet of many communities. Since the 1970’s, Spirulina has been well known and widely used as a dietary supplement in some countries.

Spirulina contains rich vegetable protein (60~ 63 %, 3~4 times higher than fish or beef ), multi Vitamins (Vitamin B 12 is 3~4 times higher than animal liver), which is particularly lacking in a vegetarian diet. It contains a wide range of minerals (including Iron, Potassium, Magnesium Sodium, Phosphorus, Calcium etc.), a high volume of Beta- carotene which protects cells (5 time more than carrots, 40 time more than spinach), high volumes of gamma-Linolein acid (which can reduce cholesterol and prevent heart disease). Further, Spirulina contains Phycocyanin which can only be found in Spirulina.

In USA, NASA have chosen to use it for astronauts food in space, and even plan to grow and harvest it in space stations in the near future.

How does Spirulina grow?

There are four major conditions for growing Spirulina.

  1. Tropical weather
  2. Strong sunshine
  3. Pure water resource
  4. Pollution free environment

It is not possible to grow Commercial Spirulina culture in a cold or temperate area. Spirulina needs consistent high temperature which helps it’s growth. Spirulina will not grow anywhere that has constant low temperature (under 25 degrees). Under 20c degrees Spirulina will stop reproducing and die in a short time.

Spirulina absorbs sunshine and then creates a reaction in it’s cells. When this reaction starts, Spirulina will produce the nutrients in the cell and will convert carbon dioxide into oxygen. Strong sunshine helps Spirulina produce more nutrients.

Spirulina grows in alkaline saline water. Because Spirulina easily absorbs nutrients from water, if the water contains pollution or heavy metals, these will be highly concentrated in the Spirulina cell. If this happens, then this kind of Spirulina is no longer suitable for human consumption.

What does Spirulina contain?

With over 100 nutrients, Spirulina is often described as the most complete food source in the world. The American National Aeronautical and Space Agency includes it in their astronauts diet and plans to grow Spirulina in it’s space station. It’s easy to see why.

Japan has some good examples of some Japanese seniors who have only relied on Spirulina and water for more than 20 years showing how good is Spirulina for the human body.

How should Spirulina be stored?

High temperature, moisture or pollution will reduce the beneficial effects of Spirulina.

  1. Buy and keep no more than 6 months worth.
  2. After open the packaging we strongly recommend you use the product within three months.
  3. After usage , ensure you reseal the packing as soon as possible.
  4. Keep the product away from any possible heat source.
  5. Keep the product away from sun or any exposure to strong light.

Who should take Spirulina?

  1. Children who don’t like or get enough vegetables and or have an imbalanced food intake.
  2. Teenagers during their rapid growing period need a sufficient injection of nutrients. Spirulina is ideal for this.
  3. Pregnant mums who need extra nutrients.
  4. Seniors who have difficulty in having reasonable average 3 meals per day.
  5. Sport lovers or athletics who need extra nutrients to keep their energy levels up.
  6. Modern busy people who don’t have the time to eat good meals.
  7. Patients or people who need high volumes of nutrients to assist recovery (please consult your doctor)
  8. Vegetarians who require extra nutrient sources

Who shouldn’t take too much Spirulina?

  1. People with hyperparathyroidism
  2. People who have serious allergies to seafood or seaweed.
  3. Patients current experiencing high fever.

How much Spirulina should be taken?

We suggest 5~10 tablets a day for adults, 3~5 tablets for children under 12 years old. If you have special requirements for extra nutrients, please consult your chemist or your health practitioner.

How should Spirulina be taken?

  1. Take only with cold or warm water, (not juice, soft drinks, coffee or tea)
  2. After taking Spirulina, avoid alcohol, soft drinks or coffee for 30 minutes as these drinks can destroy some of the Spirulina nutrients and enzymes
  3. Take at least an extra half litre of water a day
  4. It doesn’t matter if you take it once a day or twice a day, so long as you take enough for a day.

What are the Spirulina side effects?

Spirulina is a totally natural product and will not normally cause any problems to the body. Even if too much is taken, there will be no harm to the body, but doing this is a waste.

However some people may experience some of the following symptoms after taking Spirulina;

  1. Slight fever due to the body’s need to burn the extra protein from Spirulina
  2. Slight dizziness. If this occurs, take less of the product. If the symptom does not improve please stop taking Spirulina
  3. Thirst and constipation. After taking a high volume of Spirulina we recommend at least an extra 1/2 litre of water per day to help our body absorb the Spirulina
  4. Stomach ache
  5. Skin itch or slight body rash

Spirulina: a food ? or a medicine?

As we all know, some of our illnesses are caused by having insufficient nutrients in our body. These illnesses are just the symptoms to show us that we may be lacking in some nutrients. If we replenish these nutrients in time, the symptoms usually disappear. If not, we can lower the function of our immune system causing further problems.

In most cases people will go to consult their doctor and may be prescribed some medicine.

Spirulina is not a medicine, but when used as a good source of supplementary food, you can avoid nutrient deficiencies causing illnessIn most cases people will go to consult their doctor and may be prescribed some medicine.

The topic of Spirulina is currently quite hot for it’s therapeutic applications. Medical research has already shown that Spirulina can provide benefits to our body.

Spirulina can help you to have reasonable levels of nutrients in your body, which will in turn give you less of the chance to get sick.

Spirulina Vegetable protein vs animal protein

Spirulina contains more than 60% vegetable protein, which is much higher than fish, pork, or beef (which contains about 15 ~20 %).Animal protein is a much bigger molecule than vegetable protein, and is much harder to for our system to digest.

Most modern people overindulge in animal protein, by eating fish, beef, pork etc. When too much animal protein is eaten, it is deposited in our body as fat. Too much fat will cause high cholesterol levels and may impact our heart and blood vessels.

Vegetable protein is water soluble, and is much smaller than animal protein. If you eat too much vegetable protein, it is simply discharged by your system as waste and not stored as fat.

Animal protein is a much bigger molecule than vegetable protein, and is much harder to for our system to digest.

Most modern people overindulge in animal protein, by eating fish, beef, pork etc. When too much animal protein is eaten, it is deposited in our body as fat. Too much fat will cause high cholesterol levels and may impact our heart and blood vessels.

Vegetable protein is water soluble, and is much smaller than animal protein. If you eat too much vegetable protein, it is simply discharged by your system as waste and not stored as fat.

Spirulina & Heavy metals contains

Spirulina easily absorbs the nutrients from any possible source. Like putting a dry sponge in water, Spirulina will take just about everything from the water and store it in their cells.

So ,take Spirulina from polluted area may result some negative result as Spirulina has been highly concentrate all the heavy metals from growing enviorment.

Pollution sources are;

  1. Air
  2. Water
  3. Dirt or dust
  4. Feed

Air pollution will bring lead, mercury etc. All commercial Spirulina is grown in open areas,for maximum production yield.

Water pollution is another issue. Most Spirulina production sites need plenty of water to compensate for high evaporation. If the water contains any heavy metal which will accumulate in the growing system, then Spirulina will absorb it. Water pollution is a big issue as even the water pumped from the sea or surface can contain certain amounts of possible pollutants which will eventually accumulate in Spirulina.

 

Why choose Spirulina?

Richest nutrient source

Spirulina is the richest nutrient and complete food source found in the world. It contains over 100 nutrients, more than any other plant, grain or herb. Today Spirulina is widely used as a food supplement to maintain health, boost energy and reduce weight

Spirulina contains 60-63 % protein, up to 13 % of essence minerals like Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium, Phosphorus, Iron, and Zinc as well as complete vitamin B groups and many important anti-oxidants (which protect cells). The anti-oxidant Phycocyanin can only be found in Spirulina. It is the richest natural source of Vitamin E and beta-carotene.

Energy booster

 

 

Spirulina being naturally green is beneficial to our health as it contains a large amount of the chlorophyll and Phycocyanin. Chlorophyll absorbs the energy from sunlight to create carbohydrates to boost your energy through the day.

 

Vegetarians best nutrient supplement

Vegetarians can not eat animal products and commonly lack Vitamin 12 (from the animal liver), Iron (from red meat or spinach) and Amino Acids. Spirulina is a natural organic product and vegetarians taking Spirulina daily will fill these gaps.

Concentrated of protein and essential fatty acid

Amino Acids are important to our body. They assist muscle growth, immunity, and the production of enzymes and hormones. Spirulina can provide more than 60~63 percent of protein including a complete source of 8 essential amino acids, plus 10 other non-essential amino acids, which are commonly lacking in vegetarian diets.

Spirulina is also one of the few sources of food that contains omega 3 and 6 fatty acids in the linolenin, gamma linolenin acid(GLA). These fatty acids are essential in keeping a woman’s body healthy.

Weight reduction

Although Spirulina can not directly reduce your weight, it contains the nutrients our bodies need and is quickly assimilated.

Adjust your body’s PH value

The ideal healthy human body’s PH level should remain on low alkaline about PH 7.35~7.45. Modern day people indulge in too much acidic food like soft drinks, meat, cheese, eggs, and ham. These cause our body to become acidic ( PH< 7 ). Many medical research reports have proven that acidic bodies will have more chance of getting diseases or cancer. Regular use of Spirulina can help keep your body alkaline will help you reduce this risk and is the ideal food supplement for the weight reducer.

Ideal supplement food for the pregnant women and infant

While women are pregnant, the baby in their body will rapidly absorb nutrients. If the pregnant mum does not get sufficient nutrients from food while her baby is growing, she will become depleted of these nutrients herself.

Spirulina easily provides the richest and most complete source of nutrients for the pregnant women and thereby prevents nutrient deficiency after the baby is born.

Natural Nutrient source

Most multi vitamin products are synthetic (artificial). No other products can provide natural nutrients and vitamins like Spirulina. Spirulina is a totally natural non synthetic product.

 

 

Nutrition Information

Vitamins

Vitamins are essential foods which the body needs in small amounts, to work normally and to stay healthy. They are essential for proper growth in children, and for the preservation of good health for all.

Vitamins are commonly classified under thirteen headings, using letters of the alphabet,and are considered according to their ability to be absorbed in fat or water. The vitamins which are soluble in fat are A, D, E and K, they are usually consumed with fat containing foods and the body can store them within its own fat. For this reason, they are retained over some period of time, so it is not necessary to eat or drink them each day. Water soluble vitamins are the B group and vitamin C. These cannot be retained in the body so we need to take foods which contain them every day.

Vitamins Supplied by Spirulina

B6 or pyridoxine helps in the breakdown and assimilation of proteins. It offers protection to the heart and reduces oedema.

Biotin is an enzyme that carries carbon dioxide and acts as an agent in the assimilation of some B complex vitamins.

B12 or Cobalamin is very difficult to extract from vegetables, but Spirulina is rich in this rare vitamin. The deficiency of B12 is indicated in cases of pernicious anaemia, nerve degeneration etc.

Pantothenic Acid is used in the adrenal glands along with vitamin C and cholesterol to produce steroids such as cortisone in response to physical and mental stress.

Folic Acid is essential for making new red blood cells.

Inositol keeps the liver healthy and balances blood holesterol. It is probably the most abundant vitamin in the body after niacin.

Niacin is considered to be a cholesterol lowering agent as well as being essential to mental health.

B2 or Riboflavin prevents eye problems and severe eczema.

B1 or Thiamine maintains glucose level in the blood. A serious deficiency of this vitamin may result in death.

E or Tocopherol. Preserves heart and vascular health and retards ageing.

Carotenoids. Some substances in plants are not always true vitamins, but they may be something from which the body can produce its own vitamins. The carotenoid compound of Spirulina is just such a substance. Carotenoids act as free radical quenchers, so they behave as a protector for the body’s own cells.

Normally, vitamin A is available only from the liver of some animals. Since vitamin A from animals is fat soluble, the human body stores it with its own fat reserves and it is not naturally expelled when an excess is consumed. Hence, vitamin A poisoning can occur.

Beta-Carotene is a very important antioxidant. There are some sources which are artificial, and others which exist within some of our vegetable foods.

The latter group or natural beta-carotenes are much to be preferred since the body can absorb these much more quickly. Several studies have indicated that people whose diet contains a lot of beta-carotene tend to have a lower risk of developing cancer. Other developing cancer. Other advantages are that natural sources do not contain preservatives or colouring materials.

Many common foods are rich in beta-carotene and may be enjoyed for their flavour as well as their goodness. Kale and spinach with their dark green leaves, broccoli, pumpkin, carrots, squash, papayas and cantaloupes all supply this important substance.

Green and yellow vegetables in general should be embraced as important foods for good health. Spirulina of course is very rich in beta-carotene, and by using it regularly you’d ensure the body was not in need of this essential food.

Other Good Things!

Depending upon growing conditions, Spirulina will be from 65% to 71% protein. This protein content is said to be biologically complete. That means that all eight essential amino acids are present in their correct ratios. A lot of plants contain various ranges of protein, but with differing quantities of amino acids. Thus some degree of incompleteness will exist.

Here again Spirulina is different in that it contains a total of 18 amino acids in the exact proportion to mother’s breast milk.
It has these eight complete amino acids regarded as ideal for the human body.

Regrettably, the human body is unable to store amino acids, so when incomplete foods are taken, there is frequently an imbalance in the diet. Spirulina can come to the rescue with its full range of complete amino acids. These are as follows.

Isoleucine (4.13%). Needed for growth, intelligence development and nitrogen balance within the body. Also assists with synthesising other nonessential amino acids.

Leucine (5.8%). Helps to increase muscular energy levels and stimulate brain function.

Lysine (4.0%). used for forming blood antibodies, improves the circulatory system and promotes cell growth.

Methionine (2.17%). Vital for metabolising fats and lipids that maintain a healthy liver. Also helps calm the nerves.

Phenylalanine (3.95%). Used by the thyroid for the production of thyroxin which in turn governs metabolic rate.

Threonine (4.17%). Improves competence of the intestines and thus aids digestion.

Tryptophane (1.13%). Enhances the use of B group vitamins, improves nerve fibres. This in its turn contributes to emotional stability and calmness.

Valine (6.0%). Assists with the co-ordination of the muscular system as well as contributing to improved mental capacity.

Nonessential amino acids

Another group of amino acids are termed as nonessential, and there are twelve of these. Well Spirulina doesn’t have all of them, but does have ten; not bad eh? Nonessential means that if not present in normal foods, they can be synthesised; it does not mean that the body has no need of them. Again, the following list is that of the nonessential amino acids which Spirulina can provide.

Alanine (5.82%). Strengthens the walls of cells.

Arginine (5.98%). Important for the production of (male) seminal fluid which is about 80% arginine. Assists in keeping the blood clean.

Aspartic Acid (6.34%). Helps with the transformation of carbohydrates to energy.

Cystine (0.67%). Aids with pancreatic health and thus stabilises blood sugar etc. May help towards alleviating food allergies.

Glutamic Acid (8.94%). Along with glucose it fuels the brain cells. Can reduce the craving for alcohol and also stabilise mental health.

Glycine (3.5%). Promoter of energy.

Histidine (1.08%). Improves nerve relays, especially in the hearing organs. Has even been used as a remedy for deafness.

Proline (2.97%). A Precursor of Glutamic acid.

Serine (4.0%). Helps with the formation of the fatty sheath surrounding nerve fibres.

Tyrosine (4.6%). May slow the ageing of cells and suppresses hunger. Involved in the colouration of hair and skin, and indeed helps with sunburn protection.

Chlorophyll – The Green Gold

Spirulina is very high in chlorophyll. It has an average of three times the amount of the green gold of other highly developed green plants. The dark green colour of Spirulina omes from the large amount of plant blood or in other words, chlorophyll, which is only one molecule different from haemoglobin in human blood and with it, a very important substance in a healthy diet. Chlorophyll in plants is collected sunlight. This “light-energy”, as Dr. Fritz-Albert Popp, Germany, calls it, is an important key factor in the human metabolism and cell communication.

Already in 1915 Prof. Richard Willstätter was honoured for his research about chlorophyll with the Nobel Prize. He proved, that chlorophyll is able to produce living substances from dead matter with the help of the stored, converted sunlight.

Dr. Ingfried Hobert, Germany, Chairman of the International Federation to Research and Develop Traditional Healing Methods and author of the book “Das Algen Gesundheits Buch” (The Algae Health Book), highlights in his book the benefits of chlorophyll in maintaining good health. Chlorophyll is mentioned for the prevention and treatment of gastric and duodenal ulcers, acne, to strengthens the heart muscles, build up immunity and energy, as a possible anti-bactericide, only to mention a few.

Minerals

Along with vitamins, we are always told how important minerals are. Well, to most people minerals come from rocks to form stalactites, or simply make washing water harder to wash with! Minerals really are chemical elements which we know are very important for good health. They are used in extremely small amounts however.

Spirulina grows in shallow ponds which contain very high concentrations of minerals. These ponds are very alkaline and in fact almost no other plant life can survive in this type of environment. Spirulina has the ability to lock many minerals into amino acids. By doing this, when we consume Spirulina, we receive the minerals in a form which our body can readily make use of. This next list shows those minerals and trace elements which Spirulina can provide.

Calcium (1,315 mg/Kg). The most abundant mineral in the human body. Essential for strong bones and teeth. Calcium also contributes to nerve transmission ability and absorbs acids in the body.

Potassium (15,400 mg/Kg). Used for regulating electrolytes. A deficiency can lead to heart attack and muscular collapse.

Zinc (39 mg/Kg). Assists with mental health, skin tone, prostate function and the ability for wounds to heal quickly.

Magnesium (1,915 mg/Kg). Assists with the assimilation of vitamins B and C and also some proteins. A deficiency may lead to muscular and cardiac problems.

Manganese (25 mg/Kg). Activates enzymes together with zinc. Helps stabilise blood sugars.

Selenium (0.40 ppm). Improves cardiac efficiency, reduces some types of toxicity and may retard ageing processes.

Iron (580 mg/Kg). Used for making haemoglobin, the oxygen carrier in the blood.

Phosphorus (8,942 mg/Kg). Found in almost every cell of the human body, and together with calcium contributes to strong bones, and assists with digestion of carbohydrates.This information in article is repruduced with a permission.

 

Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources 

special thanks to

 Harald W. Tietze

 “Spirulina – Micro Food Macro blessing”

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AQUACULTURE, AQUAPONICS, CCRES AQUAPONICS, KOI, Slatkovodne Ribe, SPIRULINA, UZGOJ RIBA

Nutritional elements contained Spirulina

 

 

CCRES SPIRULINA PROJECT

Amino-acids composition of bulk spirulina powder

Essential
amino acids
per 100 grams
of bulk
spirulina powder
Isoleucine 3.17g
Leucine 5.02g
Lysine 2.70g
Methionine
+ Cystine
2.19g
Phenylalanine
+ Tyrosine
5.00g
Threonine 2.78g
Tryptophan 0.84g
Valine 3.48g
(Total amount
of essential
amino acids)
(25.18g)

MORE INFO HERE

Non-essential
amino acids
per 100 grams
of bulk
spirulina powder
Arginine 3.60g
Alanine 4.11g
Aspartic acid 5.47g
Glutamic acid 8.02g
Glycine 2.85g
Histidine 1.09g
Proline 2.04g
Serine 2.74g
(Total amount
of non-essential
amino acids)
(25.18g)

Pigment contents of bulk spirulina powder
(per 100 grams)

Components per 100 grams of bulk spirulina powder
Chlorophyll-a 1.29g
Total carotenes 157mg
Xanthophylls 81mg
Phycocyanin 7.56g
Major carotenoids β-carotene 201mg
Zeaxanthin 72mg
Lutein ND

Spirulina consists of the wide range of healthy/nutritional elements, more than 50 different kinds.

 β-carotene, Zeaxanthin, Chlorophyll, Phycocyanin, Polysaccharide

Amino acids

Valine, isoleucine, leucine, phenylalanine, methionine, lysine, tryptophan, threonine, cystine, tyrosine, histidine, arginine, alanine, aspartic acid, glutamic acid, glycine, proline and serine.

Vitamins

Beta-carotene, vitamin E, vitamin K1, vitamin K2, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B6, biotin, folic acid, vitamin B12 and inositol.

Minerals

Zinc, iron, magnesium, potassium, sodium, phosphorus, calcium, sulfur, selenium, cobalt, cupper, chromium and manganese.

Other nutritional elements

Dietary fiber, polysaccharides, linoleic acid, gamma-linolenic acid, phycocyanin, zeaxanthin, chlorophyll a, nucleic acid and SOD.

 

Generally, some nutrients function better in concert with vitamins, minerals and amino acids.

 

CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES

 special thanks to 

Mr. Atsushi Egashira

 President of DIC LIFETEC Co.,Ltd

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