Ocean Rainforest will use a comprehensive experimental approach to optimize the design of their novel giant kelp cultivation system. The team will conduct tests in the open ocean of several variables, including depth and length of grow lines, seeding methods, and harvest frequency. Through an array of experiments that build on themselves each year, the team will evaluate the feasibility of their cultivation system to maximize biomass production. The project team will also test several hatchery techniques to improve seeding efficiency. Under the Phase I award, the team performed initial proof-of-concept tests and a techno-economic analysis to show the potential benefit of their proposed technologies and experimental plan. Those results indicated that the proposed technologies have the potential to reduce the cost of biomass to $80/dry metric ton.
The goal for Phase 2 of the ARPA-E contract is to develop and upscale the necessary technology and machinery to de-risk the full chain from propagation to planting, cultivation and harvesting. Our team intends to demonstrate the capabilities of the design, as well as to optimize the aspects and factors that significantly affect the economics and scaling up of operations.
PI: Javier Infante; firstname.lastname@example.org
Primary Ocean Producers, Hortimare