Former DOE Aquatic Species Program Site Will Enable Commercial Scale Testing for Algae-to-oil Industry
Los Angeles, CA December 2, 2010 – OriginOil, Inc. (OOIL), the developer of a breakthrough technology to transform algae, the most promising source of renewable oil, into a true competitor to petroleum, today announced that it has been selected to help build a new Advanced Algae Center devoted to algae commercialization. Sustainable Resources, Inc. (SRI) has agreed to contract with OriginOil to plan and deploy the new center.
In a return to the industry’s origins, the Center will be located on the site of the original Aquatic Species Program in Roswell, New Mexico. Once deployed in mid-2011, the Center will give algae researchers, engineers and producers a uniquely secure and unbiased environment to test their technologies and processes on a wide variety of algae species before commercial deployment.
“We just didn’t have the time to reinvent OriginOil’s expert team and sophisticated modeling in the short time available, which made the expense a no-brainer,” said Joe Ortiz, CEO of SRI. “We are also very excited that they intend to use our facility for their own commercial testing and to integrate with other technologies.”
“Like us, algae players are always looking for resources to test and validate their technologies while retaining absolute control,” said OriginOil CTO Brian Goodall, PhD. “There’s also tremendous interest in integrating multi-vendor technologies in a convenient location. So we’re really being paid to help build something that we very much need ourselves. It’s important to add that we will have no role whatsoever in technology selection – this will be an open environment from the start.”
“We are happy to devote our hard-won expert resources to help SRI build a world-class testing and piloting platform for the long term,” said Riggs Eckelberry, OriginOil CEO. “Because we plan to integrate our technology into others’ systems rather than distributing it ourselves, we are focused only on partners who will help us prove ourselves in the field. SRI’s Advanced Algae Center fits our focus perfectly, complementing our first commercial partner, Australia’s MBD Energy.”
Located in Roswell, New Mexico, the planned Advanced Algae Center was once the headquarters for the US Department of Energy’s Aquatic Species Program from 1978 to 1996. With its abundant sunshine and low production costs, the location offers an ideal setting for algae growth. The state is ideally located between major algae research centers in Texas, Arizona and California, and is home to a number of high-profile algae production facilities, the National Laboratories at Sandia and Los Alamos, and Native American nations with a strong interest in sustainable energy projects.