• © Fraunhofer IZI-BB

  • © Fraunhofer IZI-BB

  • © Fraunhofer IZI-BB

  • © University of Göttingen

  • © Fraunhofer IZI-BB


The selection of the best suited microalgae is the basis for a successful value chain. Therefore the first major project task is the identification and selection of microalgae that perfectly fit the determined profile and requirements. In the focus are microalgae that show a preferably high amount of the omega 3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), while, at the same time, no or only very little arachidonic acid (ARA) should be present. Further important criteria for the selection of suitable microalgae are the general growth rate, the sensitivity regarding growth conditions (e.g. temperature, light, water) and the possibility to grow the strains in photobioreactors. Based on a preselection of more than 150 strains, the best-suited 5-10 strains will be selected, analysed in detail and prepared for upscaling. A very specific focus is on the identification of cryophilic algae strains (cold temperatures and low light intensities) for the proposed Algae Crop Rotation (ACR) principle. The idea behind the ACR-principle is to enable a consistent all-year production of EPA/DHA by utilising mesophilic and cryophilic strains.


Following the identification of suitable EPA/DHA-producers, upscaling experiments are required to see if the algae can be produced at industrial scale. These upscaling experiments are performed in several stages first to 5 litres lab-scale then to pilot-scale from 90 litres to 1,100 litres and 1,500 litres photobioreactors, and ultimately to industrial-scale with 10,000 litres.

Coming soon

Links to other Algae Projects

PUFAChain takes part in the active collaboration with other European Algae Projects:

MIRACLES is an industry-driven R&D and innovation project aimed at developing integrated, multiple-product biorefinery technologies for the production of specialties from microalgae for application in food, aquaculture and non-food products. Visit miraclesproject.eu


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