Analyzing Algal Biofuels’ Path Towards Cost Parity

November 20, 2015 | State of the Market Report

Despite a sudden peak in investments into algae-related projects during the 2009 “summer of algae,” algal biofuels failed to make any commercial progress as hype gave way to reality and economics. For this report, we built a detailed cost model to analyze the economic viability for algal biofuels. We analyzed the effects of algae strain advancements - productivity, lipid content, and nutrient uptake – and improvements in process efficiency – algae harvesting and algal oil extraction. We then analyzed the effects of electricity price and carbon dioxide price on algal oil production costs to assess the economic viability and identify key technology improvements necessary to drive down the cost of algal biofuels production at commercial scale.

Coverage Areas

  • Alternative Fuels
  • Owning the Energy Transition

Table of Contents

  • Title page
  • The rise, fall, and future of algal biofuels
  • Modeling the cost of algal biofuels production
  • Breaking the cost barrier for algal biofuels
  • Appendix

Lead Analyst

Victor Oh
Analyst

Contributors

Brent Giles, Ph.D.
Yuan-Sheng Yu

About Lux Research

Lux Research is a leading provider of tech-enabled research and advisory solutions, helping clients drive growth through technology innovation. A pioneer in the research industry, Lux uniquely combines technical expertise and business insights with a proprietary intelligence platform, using advanced analytics and data science to surface true leading indicators. With quality data derived from primary research, fact-based analysis, and opinions that challenge traditional thinking, Lux clients are empowered to make more informed decisions today to ensure future success.

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