April 02, 2014
Following six months of testing and evaluation, Aurora Algae has confirmed the potential for commercial-scale algae cultivation in South Texas, and is expanding its test facility, beginning with four, one-acre cultivation ponds and a harvesting system.
“We have successfully tested our algae cultivation system in countries around the world, including Australia, India, Italy, Mexico, and multiple locations in the United States,” said Greg Bafalis, Aurora Algae CEO. “Our most recent test site, near Harlingen, Texas, is meeting and surpassing our growth rate expectations for this area.”
Aurora Algae operated a demonstration-scale algae cultivation facility in Karratha, Western Australia, for over two-and-a-half years, successfully demonstrating production of up to 15 tonnes of dried algal biomass per month while continuing to refine its cultivation and harvesting processes. Aurora management believes the Karratha facility to have been the most technologically advanced algae production system in the world.
Research and development activities at the Karratha facility were concluded in December 2013, and the Company turned its focus to the commercialization of its proprietary algae cultivation process.
Located nine miles from Harlingen, the Aurora Algae evaluation site in Rio Hondo, Texas, sits on a 1,880-acre parcel, which was formerly home to a shrimp farming operation.
“Our algae grow best in salt water, in warm climates without too much rainfall,” explained Bafalis. “From our initial testing, South Texas looks like a great fit for our requirements. Early results are extremely encouraging, and we are excited by the possibility of building our first commercial-scale operation on American soil.”