Indian biofuels company to extend research

An agreement has been signed between India-based seaweed-to-biofuel company Sea6 Energy and biotechnology researchers Novozymes.

Sea6 has raised $655,000 (€507,450) to further develop green algae biofuel after converting red seaweed into ethanol in its laboratory using traditional yeast processes.

‘The advantages to red seaweed over others are that it is a good bet for a commercial biofuel enterprise,’ Sea6 chairman Shrikumar Suryanarayan was quoted. ‘It grows at a high yield per hectare for one, about 100 tonnes per hectare or almost double the yield of some land-based plants, making it easier to produce massive amounts of biomass needed to make commercially-viable amounts of ethanol.’

Sea6 has also developed technology to allow farmers to grow seaweed in deep waters as opposed to shallow seas as it hopes to be the first Indian company to diversify feedstocks away from sugarcane and corn.

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