The term aquatic biomass refers to any plant or animal material that has formed in water, such as algae and seaweed. Algae, aquatic plants and aquatic invertebrates (such as worms, insects and rotifers) can be grown in waste streams in order to contribute to a better utilisation of the waste stream. Examples of a waste stream is the liquid fraction of digestate that is released after the production of biogas or water used in processing in the food industry. These techniques transform the still valuable nutrients from the water into superior components in the cultured aquatic biomass such as proteins, fats and functional ingredients (eg. Antioxidants and dyes). These can be valorised in different ways, for example, as a durable (domestic) animal feed or food ingredient.
What do we do?
We work on several projects in partnership with algae producers, technology producers, purchasers of aquatic biomass or companies that have residue streams in the agrifood sector. The goal is to make production more profitable and more sustainable. This way we convert low-grade components into valuable commodities.
ACRRES joined a network of algae pilots in Northwest Europe, which is working on models for algae cultivation (open pond, tubular reactors and flatbed) and on ways to process algae into bioethanol, biogas and biodiesel. We are also working on the production of polyunsaturated fatty acids from algae. Part of a project is the societal embedding of large-scale algae production, such as through exploration of social acceptance and implementation of LCA (life cycle analysis). We also examine whether the inundation of land can be made more economically viable with algae cultivation.
For studying algae, we have raceway ponds and cultivation systems of up to several cubic metres for testing in field conditions. We also work with quick tests and breeder reactors on a litre scale in which process parameters can be fully controlled. We have a lot of practical experience, a hands-on mentality and enthusiasm. A unique and ideal combination for cutting-edge research.
Does your company have aqueous residue streams that may be suitable or are you interested in the culture of aquatic biomass or it’s processing and use? Please contact Rommie van der Weide, tel.: 0320-291631.