SGI is designing next generation cleaner fuels and chemicals that can be produced from a variety of broadly available, cost-effective, non-food feedstocks. Our fuels are being designed to be compatible with the existing distribution infrastructure, and to possess superior characteristics compared to traditional biofuels. Our biochemicals resemble traditional petrochemical products.
SGI is harnessing photosynthetic microbes (i.e., algae) to produce a range of liquid fuels and chemicals directly from sunlight and carbon dioxide. Algae produce significantly higher amounts of biomass and oil as compared to terrestrial crops, can be grown on land that is not suitable for agriculture, can thrive in sewage or other types of waste water, and are efficient at capturing and recycling carbon dioxide, a major greenhouse gas.
Current methods to produce fuel from algae include processes that resemble farming. Algal cells are grown, harvested, and then bioprocessed to recover the lipids from within the cells. In contrast, in one of our solutions, SGI has engineered algal cells to secrete oil in a continuous manner through their cell walls, thus facilitating the production of algal fuels and chemicals in large-scale industrial operations. Our first product in this area is a biocrude to be used as a feedstock in refineries.
Algae Biofuels Research and Development Program - Collaboration with ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Company (EMRE)
SGI and EMRE have established a multi-year research and development strategic alliance focused on exploring the most efficient and cost effective ways to produce next generation biofuels using photosynthetic algae. Using our scientific expertise, SGI will continue its work to discover and develop superior strains of algae using leading edge genomic technologies. ExxonMobil's engineering and scientific expertise will be utilized throughout the program, from the development of systems to increase the scale of algae production through to the manufacturing of finished fuels.
Lignocellulosic biomass, abundant and renewable plant matter, has been recognized as a potential low cost, readily available feedstock for energy production.
At SGI, we are applying our cutting-edge synthetic biology tools to develop new microbial solutions to convert lignocellulosic biomass into advanced fuels and chemicals in a simple and cost-effective, one-step conversion process, known as Consolidated Bio-processing.
SGI is leveraging our expertise in discovering, culturing and optimizing microbes to conduct above ground conversion of coal to fuels and chemicals using microbes that can degrade coal and produce more value added products.