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Sustainability 2016, 8(12), 1215;

Microalgae Potential and Multiple Roles—Current Progress and Future Prospects—An Overview

Animal Environment Division, Department of Animal Biotechnology and Environment, National Institute of Animal Science (NIAS), Rural Development Administration (RDA), Wanju-Gun, Jeollabuk-Do 55365, Korea
Environmental Engineering, Department of Civil Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, New Delhi 110016, India
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Michael Wachendorf
Received: 29 August 2016 / Revised: 7 November 2016 / Accepted: 21 November 2016 / Published: 25 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomass Energy Conversion)
Full-Text   |   PDF [1885 KB, uploaded 25 November 2016]   |  


Substantial progress has been made in algal technologies in past few decades. Initially, microalgae drew the attention of the scientific community as a renewable source of biofuels due to its high productivity over a short period of time and potential of significant lipid accumulation. As of now, a technological upsurge has elaborated its scope in phycoremediation of both organic and inorganic pollutants. The dual role of microalgae—i.e., phycoremediation coupled with energy production—is well established, however, commercially, algal biofuel production is not yet sustainable due to high energy inputs. Efforts are being made to make the algal biofuel economy through modification in the cultivation conditions, harvesting, and extraction of value added products. Recent studies have demonstrated algal biomass production with various types of wastewater and industrial effluents. Similarly, the recent advent of eco-friendly harvesting technologies—such as low-cost green coagulants, electrochemical harvesting, etc.—are energy efficient and economical. Contemporary improvement in efficient lipid extraction from biomass will make algal biodiesel economical. The absolute extraction of all the value added products from algal biomass, either whole cell or lipid extracted biomass, in a complete biorefinery approach will be more economical and eco-friendly. View Full-Text
Keywords: microalgae; lipid extraction; energy; biofuel; value added products; waste water treatment; CO2 sequestrations microalgae; lipid extraction; energy; biofuel; value added products; waste water treatment; CO2 sequestrations

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Ravindran, B.; Gupta, S.K.; Cho, W.-M.; Kim, J.K.; Lee, S.R.; Jeong, K.-H.; Lee, D.J.; Choi, H.-C. Microalgae Potential and Multiple Roles—Current Progress and Future Prospects—An Overview. Sustainability 2016, 8, 1215.

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