The industrial research Project, with secondary experimental development activities, involved developing a demonstrational or prototype system, on a pseudo- or semi-industrial scale, of a complete advanced energy system based on mass cultivation of high-yield, possibly oily microalgae using completely closed, transparent, tubular photobioreactors made of plastic (recycled plastic if possible), arranged horizontally on the ground and operating continuously. The system is designed to produce competitive, environmentally sustainable energy (second generation biodiesel/biofuel and biogas) as well as potential high added value products such as animal feed, fertilizers, cosmetics, etc.).
With a truly systemic and holistic approach – thorough, integrated, multidimensional and multidisciplinary – the project placed focus on all the various sciences involved (biology, chemistry/products, technical/engineering and even socio-economic and organizational/management aspects) and on the productive relationships between them.
The project was granted community funding under MIUR’s PON01 call for proposals. The project was proposed in April 2010 and awarded funding in July 2011.