UPLB, University of Tsukuba to study producing fuel and feeds using microalgae

  • Written by  Anna Elaine D. Matanguihan
  • Published in News

UPLB is now working with Japan’s University of Tsukuba on doing studies on microalgae production. The collaboration was initiated by Vice Chancellor for Research and Extension Dr. Rex B. Demafelis who is looking at microalgae-based production of fuel and feeds as a catalyst for a bio-based Philippine society.

Researchers from the two universities recently met on 13 August 2019 at the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Extension to discuss the project proposal for the study.

Present during the meeting were professors from University of Tsukuba (UT) led by Prof. Sosaku Ichikawa, a member of the Algae Biomass and Energy System R&D Center. VC Demafelis represented UPLB along with several researchers from the Interdisciplinary Biofuels Research Studies Center, Interdisciplinary Life Cycle Assessment Laboratory, and the Institute of Biological Sciences.

A five-year project on “Catalyzing a Sustainable Philippine Bio-based Society through Innovative Microalgae-based Production” is being proposed to produce biojet fuel and feeds for livestock, poultry, and shrimp from microalgae.

Dr. Makoto Watanabe, lead proponent from the University of Tsukuba, works on the cultivation and processing of microalgae and believes that the partnership with UPLB will help commercial technology adopters achieve biomass yield target for viable production. In addition, he is positive that the Philippines’ climate will make for a very competitive microalgae industry.

UPLB has also partnered with Clark Premiere Industrial Park, Inc. which has lessee corporations from the aviation, feed production, wastewater treatment, and heat- and CO2-intensive industries. Collaborations with these industries, through the CPIP, is being secured.

The potential partnerships will also showcase combined expertise, technology transfer, and innovation to make the use of microalgae a sustainable and profitable industry.