Bioalgal Energy

The November 2016 issue of the National Science Teacher's Association (NSTA) journal The Science Teacher features an article co-authored by Becky Bixby, one of our Bioalgal Energy component co-leads. Together with Molly Sultany, a high school science teacher in Portland, Oregon, Becky emphasizes the importance of including diatoms in lessons for students in biology, chemistry, and environmental science.

Dr. David Hanson, Bioalgal Energy co-lead for Energize New Mexico recently received two grants that fund collaborative efforts in energy and biology. These two grants alone will bring $1.2 million over 3 years into Dave's lab specifically, and a total of $3 million into New Mexico. Both grants were facilitated by EPSCoR.

If you are a research scientist or a graduate student, funding is probably often at the top of the list of your concerns. In the clean energy research sector, it's often difficult to find funding outside of government sources. But fear not! A new initiative promises to bring over $1 billion to clean energy projects. Microsoft Founder Bill Gates hopes to change that with his recently announced investor-led fund called Breakthrough Energy Ventures (BEV).

Last month, we announced (via email) that members and organizations of our Bioalgal Component team have been nominated for the "Who Makes A Difference" Algae Industry Magazine (AIM) 2015 International Readers Poll. According to the Magazine, the Poll's mission is to enable their readers to "recognize and reward innovation and excellence; convey who and what make a difference in the algae industry; celebrate innovative people, companies, laboratories, and technologies; and give AIM readers a go-to source for algae industry resources." The winners were announced on January 15th, and we're happy to say that our people and places took home awards in the categories for which they were nominated!

Dr. Richard T. Sayre is a senior research scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and the New Mexico Consortium, and he is a member of our Bioalgal Team. Dr. Sayre’s current research interests include; characterization and engineering of primary processes in photosynthesis and carbon metabolism, algal and plant biotechnology, and nutritional biofortification of crop plants. In preparation for this year's legislative session, Dr. Sayre wrote an article called, "Science on the Hill: Driving toward an algae-powered future" for the Santa Fe New Mexican. In the article, Dr.

Over the summer, two students participated in the NM EPSCoR Externship Program. The Externship Program is a research exchange program that allows New Mexico graduate students (with an existing assistantship) to spend a semester or summer doing research at a partnering New Mexico university or research facility. This report is from UNM PhD student John Roesgen about his summer at NMSU.

As part of an initiative to shine a light on the benefits of community college education, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Representative Ben Ray Luján toured Santa Fe Community College and it's new Trades and Advanced Technology Center.

Santa Fe Community College (SFCC) has been awarded a $50,000, SEED Infrastructure Grant from the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR), for commercial algae photo-bioreactor monitoring. It will fund the purchase of state-of-the-art sensors to monitor algae growth in photobioreactors (PBRs) that are up to 10,000 liters in volume.

Dr. Peter Lammers, a project lead on the NM EPSCoR bioalgal energy component, and his team at New Mexico State University (NMSU) were recently awarded a $5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to continue research on algae-based fuel. The project, entitled "Realization of Algae Potential" or REAP, will last 2.5 years and will focus on improving the yields and stability of algal biomass and cultivation systems.