Schott, Algatech find that thin glass walls for improve algae cultivation efficiency in photobioreactors

September 28, 2014 |

In Israel, Schott and Algatech, have signed an extension of their R&D agreement covering thin-walled DURAN glass tubes glass tubes for Algatech’s algae production facility, that have “significantly improved cultivation efficiency in the yields of Algatech’s AstaPure natural astaxanthin.” A dedicated section of Algatech’s factory in the Arava Desert will serve as a beta site for advanced glass components developed by SCHOTT for implementation in PBRs.

Close Up Algae tube of DURAN Glass

Close Up Algae tube of DURAN Glass

Algatech sought to optimize cultivation of AstaPure, a premium natural antioxidant known as astaxanthin, as part of its goal to double production capacity. SCHOTT partnered with Algatech in 2013 to produce 16 kilometers—nearly 10 miles—of thin-walled DURAN glass tubes for testing in Algatech’s photobioreactor (PBR) production systems at its array in Israel. The use of DURAN tubes resulted in an increase in algae production efficiency and higher yields of AstaPure astaxanthin.

Algatechnologies Photobioreactor facility in Israel Kibbutz Ketura

Algatechnologies Photobioreactor facility in Israel Kibbutz Ketura

“From energy to medicine, cosmetics to nutraceuticals, many different industries rely on algae,” said Raz Rashelbach, R&D manager at Algatech. “The success of the thin-walled DURAN tubing has helped increase the AstaPure production efficiency on a small scale that can now be replicated on a much larger scale.”

Dr. Nikolaos Katsikis of SCHOTT and Raz Rashelbach of Algatech will present the study’s results to date at the Algae Biomass Summit, held from September 29 to October 2 in San Diego, Calif.

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