Marine BioEnergy, Inc.
Marine BioEnergy, Inc is collaborating for proof-of-concept testing with a research team at the University of Southern California. Giant Kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) is one of the fastest growing producers of biomass. The open ocean is an immense, untapped region for collecting solar energy. Giant kelp does not grow naturally in the open ocean because kelp normally needs an attachment at about 10-20 meters of depth and also needs key nutrients that are available in deep ocean water or near shore but not at the surface in the open ocean. This concept proposes an economical system to provide a grid for attachment and access to nutrients, making it possible to farm kelp in the extensive regions of the open ocean.
Find locations served, office locations
- Business Type:
- Industry Type:
- Market Focus:
- Nationally (across the country)
This company also provides solutions for other industrial applications.
Please, visit the following links for more info:
Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies. This effort is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E). Wrigley Institute has a research facility on Catalina Island, about 25 miles off the coast of Los Angeles. Catalina Island is renowned for flourishing natural kelp beds and clear water.
The key test is: does a fast-growing kelp thrive when depth-cycled at night to absorb nutrients and surfaced during the day to absorb sunlight? The target species is giant kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera).
The first test has now been completed and depth-cycled kelps to 80 meters depth (272 feet). The Marine Biology team has collecting permits and collected juveniles with the first blade (leaf) but not formed the first pnuematocyst (floatation bulb formed and used by the kelp to float the plant upward to the surface and the sunlight). The Biologists collected enough juveniles for both the depth-cycling test and a matched control line. All juveniles were surfaced, weighed and measured and then deployed to either the test or control system.
The juvenile kelps were attached to an anchored buoy system which surfaced the kelps during the day and submerged them at night. The buoy is located in deep water with no nutrients in the top layer and abundant nutrients in the deeper water below the thermocline. Marine Biologists monitored the kelps and the water nutrients regularly. At the end of this first test, the biomass was weighed and compared to biomass from the control group.