Scaling up from the laboratory to the industrial plant
Escalado de la Producción EN

Strategic Plan

AlgaEnergy’s Strategic Plan has envisaged the responsible and progressive scale-up of its R&D and Production facilities, since the scientific and technological barriers that may be encountered do not only vary according to engineering parameters but also differ according to the volume of a particular crop, and the purpose for which it is intended.

The first culture facility, a mobile laboratory already much larger than in a laboratory, was completed in 2009 and its technology was fine-tuned over the course of 2010. In 2010, AlgaEnergy designed its new Experimentation Plant, whose construction at the “Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport” was completed in May, 2011. Since then, numerous researches are being undertaken at that plant, including challenging, comparing and contrasting strains, technologies and processes.

The next phase of AlgaEnergy’s Strategic Plan was the design and construction of the Production Plant in “Arcos de la Frontera (Cadiz)”, covering an area of 1 hectare. The first phase of this plant is operational since May 2014, and the production capacity is in continuous expansion ever since.

PHASE I: Laboratory

Cultivation of microalgae for the treatment and disposal of combustion gases generated in industrial processes require a large investment. It is recommended, therefore, to know beforehand if the combustion gases emitted are compatible with the cultivation of microalgae and also what their efficiency is.


AlgaEnergy has developed the technology of on-site flue gas analysis and its temporary storage in active carbon. Depending on the composition of those gases, any CO2emitting company may, also on-site, experience and select – with different types of water and effluents – the most efficient microorganism for CO2 capture, according to all these parameters, with the ultimate goal of transforming this pernicious gas into reusable biomass rich in compounds of interest.

Such services and unique features have interacted in the CO2BIOCAP mobile laboratory, which, due to its novelty, has been industrially protected.


PHASE II: Pilot Plant

AlgaEnergy has constructed and is operating since 2011 its own Technological Microalgal Experimentation Platform (PTEM), which is possibly the R&D’s most powerful and versatile private tool within the international arena of microalgal biotechnology.

Located at the “Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas” Airport, alongside the T4, the PTEM combines different types of photobioreactors which can simultaneously cultivate several strains of microalgae, being one of its main nutrients the CO2 obtained from IBERIA’s industrial facilities.


The purpose of the PTEM is the industrial development of the R&D, focused on improving the design of the production technologies with permanent innovations across all phases of the process, as well as serving as experimentation plant, whose production is transferred to its more than hundred collaborators within the frame of the R&D Programs in which it participates.

The PTEM is the result of AlgaEnergy’s collaboration agreements signed with the Ministry of Transport (Ministry of Development), IBERIA (Spanish Airlines), and AENA (the world’s leading airport operator), and its construction has been co-financed by the Madrid Community and the European Union (European Fund for Regional Development – FEDER).


PHASE III: Industrialization

The Plant of “Arcos de la Frontera” has the goal of biofixating the CO2 from industrially originated real flue gas emissions via microalgae culturing, transforming this noxious gas into products of commercial interest.

The plant has been constructed in an extension of 10,000m2, annexed to the biggest Combyned Cycle Power Plant in Spain, owned by AlgaEnergy’s partner and shareholder IBERDROLA (public company), and takes its main nutrient –the CO2-, directly from the emitting chimney.

In May 2014, with the start of the plant’s first phase operations, which are completely automatized, AlgaEnergy consolidated its leading international positioning within the sector of the microalgae biotechnology, contributing with this industrial facility, whose size and technologies had never been experimented together before, to the practical an beneficial use of CO2 by mankind, and the obtaining of new products based on the culture of photosynthetic microorganisms.

The industrial plant of “Arcos de la Frontera”  forms part of the CO2ALGAEFIX program, co-funded by the European Commission through the LIFE + Program, whose consortium is led by ALGAENERGY and participated by IBERDROLA, the ANDALUSIAN ENERGY AGENCY, the UNIVERSITY OF SEVILLE, the UNIVERSITY OF ALMERIA, EXELERIA and MADRID BIOCLUSTER.

If you wish further information on the CO2ALGAEFIX program, please visit:


Techology & Engineering

AlgaEnergy’s vast know-how and accumulated expertise, not to mention the sheer professionalism shown by its own team as well as its scientific partners, grant it the capability to provide technological and engineering solutions throughout all stages of the process, as well as turnkey plants for microalgae cultivation, from pilot to industrial scale. These kinds of projects are tailor designed, and include training, follow-up and monitoring phases.

Turnkey Plants

If you are interested in our microalgae production plants, need further information or any clarification, please do not hesitate to contact us: