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Surveying techno-economic indicators of microalgae biofuel technologies


  • Ribeiro, Lauro André
  • Silva, Patrícia Pereira da


The need to develop innovative technologies that could replace fossil fuels and, consequently contribute to the reduction in emissions of greenhouse gases is now clear. In this circumstance, algal biofuels are generating considerable interest around the world. The purpose of this study is to provide an integrated assessment of microalgae potential as a source of biofuels, while comparing its costs with that from other emerging biofuel technologies. This article emphasizes the importance of emerging United States and European Union energy policies that will encourage the development of innovative, and sustainable technologies in their respective regions. An ample review of the scientific literature was carried out, contributing to the analysis of cost, economic and technical indicators. The results obtained allowed the detection of important gaps of information that need to be filled, in order to guide future investment decisions concerning this rising technology.

Suggested Citation

  • Ribeiro, Lauro André & Silva, Patrícia Pereira da, 2013. "Surveying techno-economic indicators of microalgae biofuel technologies," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 25(C), pages 89-96.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:rensus:v:25:y:2013:i:c:p:89-96
    DOI: 10.1016/j.rser.2013.03.032

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Mathimani, Thangavel & Mallick, Nirupama, 2018. "A comprehensive review on harvesting of microalgae for biodiesel – Key challenges and future directions," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 1103-1120.
    2. Aziz, Md Maniruzzaman A. & Kassim, Khairul Anuar & Shokravi, Zahra & Jakarni, Fauzan Mohd & Liu, Hong Yuan & Zaini, Nabilah & Tan, Lian See & Islam, A.B.M. Saiful & Shokravi, Hoofar, 2020. "Two-stage cultivation strategy for simultaneous increases in growth rate and lipid content of microalgae: A review," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 119(C).
    3. Ramos Tercero, Elia Armandina & Domenicali, Giacomo & Bertucco, Alberto, 2014. "Autotrophic production of biodiesel from microalgae: An updated process and economic analysis," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 807-815.
    4. Bergthorson, Jeffrey M. & Thomson, Murray J., 2015. "A review of the combustion and emissions properties of advanced transportation biofuels and their impact on existing and future engines," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 1393-1417.
    5. Piloto-Rodríguez, Ramón & Sánchez-Borroto, Yisel & Melo-Espinosa, Eliezer Ahmed & Verhelst, Sebastian, 2017. "Assessment of diesel engine performance when fueled with biodiesel from algae and microalgae: An overview," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 69(C), pages 833-842.
    6. Jayakumar, Saravanan & Yusoff, Mashitah M. & Rahim, Mohd Hasbi Ab. & Maniam, Gaanty Pragas & Govindan, Natanamurugaraj, 2017. "The prospect of microalgal biodiesel using agro-industrial and industrial wastes in Malaysia," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 33-47.
    7. Giostri, A. & Binotti, M. & Macchi, E., 2016. "Microalgae cofiring in coal power plants: Innovative system layout and energy analysis," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 449-464.
    8. Hognon, Céline & Delrue, Florian & Boissonnet, Guillaume, 2015. "Energetic and economic evaluation of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii hydrothermal liquefaction and pyrolysis through thermochemical models," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 93(P1), pages 31-40.
    9. Cheah, Wai Yan & Ling, Tau Chuan & Show, Pau Loke & Juan, Joon Ching & Chang, Jo-Shu & Lee, Duu-Jong, 2016. "Cultivation in wastewaters for energy: A microalgae platform," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 179(C), pages 609-625.
    10. Shah, Syed Hasnain & Raja, Iftikhar Ahmed & Rizwan, Muhammad & Rashid, Naim & Mahmood, Qaisar & Shah, Fayyaz Ali & Pervez, Arshid, 2018. "Potential of microalgal biodiesel production and its sustainability perspectives in Pakistan," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 81(P1), pages 76-92.
    11. Zhu, Liandong, 2015. "Biorefinery as a promising approach to promote microalgae industry: An innovative framework," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 1376-1384.
    12. Ribeiro, Lauro A. & da Silva, Patrícia Pereira & Mata, Teresa M. & Martins, António A., 2015. "Prospects of using microalgae for biofuels production: Results of a Delphi study," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 799-804.


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