Iberdrola Ingenieria and Ainia Technology Centre Create Revolutionary Systems for Capturing CO2 and Growing MicroAlgea

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  • The new technique that has been developed was launched in Valencia today. It is based on capturing the CO2 from pollutant smoke and reusing it as food in growing microalgae, which are already being used in multiple applications at present
  • This research is one of the key studies carried out for the CENIT VIDA project, an R&D project spearheaded by the subsidiary of IBERDROLA with the participation of 13 companies and 25 research institutes

IBERDROLA INGENIERÍA and AINIA TECHNOLOGY CENTRE presented the results of the research carried out under the auspices of the CENIT VIDA project, resulting in the creation of revolutionary systems for capturing CO2 and the bioproduction of microalgae.

The event held at the premises of AINIA in Valencia was attended by the Director of Innovation in the aforementioned subsidiary of IBERDROLA, Luis Malumbres; IBERDROLA’s Delegate in the Valencian Community, Julian Bolinches; the Director of R&D in AINIA, José García; the Director of Monitoring, Systems and Processes at the Centre for Industrial and Technological Development (CDTI), German Rodriguez, and the Head of the Project Control Division at the same CDTI centre, José Rivillas.

The event included a demonstration of the new technique that has been developed, which is based on capturing CO2 from pollutant smoke using a device specially designed for this project and reusing the purified CO2 to feed the growth of microalgae, which are already being used in multiple applications. The new microalgae growth system developed in the project was also displayed.

This project is a very important step forward in researching the field of microalgae, which are considered to be very important nowadays for their use in energy and because they contain a huge variety of compounds that are of value to the market: proteins, thickening agents, vitamins, enzymes, antibiotics, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals or chemicals.

This initiative has also led to the development of a very advanced system for the selective capture of CO2, which is capable of attaining a purity rate of up to 95%. In developing this technology, pilot simulations were carried out with combustion gases and various different options for capturing and concentrating CO2were tried out.

The studies shown were carried out in full at the premises of AINIA over the last three years and they represent the experimental success of this project, which created the knowledge needed to enable it to be applied to a real commercial venture.

This research is one of the key studies carried out for the CENIT VIDA project, an R&D project spearheaded by IBERDROLA INGENIERÍA – with Carlos Padilla as Project Manager – in collaboration with a consortium of 13 companies and 25 research institutes.

CENIT VIDA is backed by the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness and subsidised by the Centre for Technological and Industrial Development (CDTI). This scientific and technological initiative seeks to create a new concept of “Biocity” that is self-sufficient and sustainable (Spanish acronym: BioCAS), by applying to the urban environment a new culture of reusing natural resources, waste and pollutants.

This participation in the CENIT VIDA project is an example of the policy in place in IBERDROLA INGENIERÍA as regards including a high degree of innovation in all of its projects. In fact, its technological capabilities make this subsidiary of IBERDROLA one of the leading engineering firms in the energy sector worldwide, with the ability to compete on the international markets.

IBERDROLA INGENIERÍA is currently one of the most international companies in its sector, with operations in almost 40 countries. The main activity of this subsidiary of IBERDROLA is the completion of turnkey projects for other companies in the group and for third parties, in the areas of generation, nuclear energy, networks and renewable energies.

AINIA TECHNOLOGY CENTRE is a European benchmark institution in R&D. Among other lines of work, it is at the forefront in developing technologies that allow to reuse and find new purposes for organic by-products and waste, as well as in designing highly innovative industrial processes.

With operations in 17 different countries, it has over 800 member companies and 1,200 customers, making it one of the technology centres with the most extensive social and corporate support in Spain.