Lab wins DOE funding for research to turn algae into renewable energy

Durham, N.C., January 15, 2010 — U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced the award of $44 million in federal stimulus funds to The National Alliance for Advanced Biofuels and Bioproducts, a consortium including Palmer Labs, LLC, of Durham, NC.

The DOE funds will support enhanced research by Palmer Labs of its patent-pending algae technology addressing both energy and nutritional applications.

“Our goal is highly focused,” said Dr. Miles Palmer, company president. “We take the biggest problems — currently in energy and food resources — and find cheaper and better solutions through innovative combinations of proven technologies. The DOE stimulus funds provide timely support of this pressing goal to us and our consortium partners.”

Researchers at Palmer Labs are developing methods for harnessing algae to “close the carbon cycle,” said Bill Brown, Chairman of Palmer Labs and Duke Law School faculty member. “Our unique approach to algae will help provide a solution to the problem of CO2 emissions and, at the same time, provide algae for both food and energy production.”

Palmer Labs engineers are also designing and testing systems to burn algae to make renewable electricity. “This power system allows us to use algae to turn sunlight — the ultimate renewable resource — into electricity,” said Dr. Palmer. “Our system is designed to use biomass, natural gas or coal while capturing virtually all the CO2 emissions at a cost lower than present commercial systems.”

“We formed Palmer Labs to help address many of the world’s problems,” said Prof. Brown. “As we have seen with the recent U.N. Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, policy makers are struggling to devise the solutions to the environmental challenges that engulf us. We believe that technology both delivers and is a powerful, democratizing force.”

 

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