SINTEF granted 2.6 million euro for industrial seaweed cultivation

New project MACROSEA will target reliable production of high quality biomass

Cultivated_SeaweedIBNN member SINTEF receives EUR 2.6 million (NOK 24 million) from the Norwegian Research Council to establish an interdisciplinary knowledge platform for industrial cultivation of macroalgae.

“The potential of algae cultivation is huge,” says the Research Council to NRK, the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (read the article here). “Algae can be used as raw materials in feed, food products, as source of bioenergy, and in industrial products which today are based on fossil fuels.”

“SINTEF’s application has received very high score in the evaluation made by an international expert panel, says the the research council’s Executive director for Division for Energy, Resources and the Environment, Fridtjof Unander. “We have great expectations for the results of this project.“

Building a knowledge platform

By combining scientific excellence with industrial relevance, SINTEF’s new project MACROSEA will target successful and predictable production of high quality biomass. The project will provide Norway with important tools, enabling the country to take key steps towards a cost-effective industrial cultivation of macroalgae.

The projects primary objective is to establish an interdisciplinary knowledge platform on fundamental production biology and technology for cultivation, over a wide range of climatic, ecological and physical regimes.

Other objectives are; to increase the principal knowledge on biological performance and environmental requirements for optimized chemical composition and biomass production. It is also to obtain technological specifications and to develop generic models and simulation tools for farm systems and biomass production.

Both the brown kelps S. latissima and A. esculenta, and the red P. palmate, will be studied as promising candidates of industrial relevance for cultivation in Norway.

International research collaboration

The project is a collaboration between several research partners, both in Norway and internationally, in addition to industry partners.



National research partners

  • SINTEF Fisheries and Aquaculture – Project leader
  • Norwegian University of Science and Technology NTNU
  • University of Oslo
  • University of Bergen
  • UiT The Arctic University of Norway
  • Akvaplan Niva
  • Norwegian Institute for Water Research

International research partners

  • Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences
  • The Scottish Association for Marine Science
  • Aarhus University, AlgeCenter Denmark
  • Clarkson University

Industry group

  • Austevoll Seaweed Farm
  • Biokraft
  • Folla Alger
  • Hortimare
  • Ocean Forest
  • PE Reefs
  • Seaweed AS
  • Seaweed Energy Solutions

Figure: The project MACROSEA envisages an interdisciplinary knowledge platform on fundamental macroalgae production biology and technology, to make significant steps towards industrial cultivation in Norway.


Industrial Biotech Network Norway, press release, 2015-12-07.


Aarhus University
Akvaplan-niva AS
Austevoll Seaweed Farm
Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS)
Clarkson University NY
Folla Alger AS
Industrial Biotech Network Norway IBNN
Norwegian Institute for Water research - NIVA
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
PE Reefs
Seaweed Energy Solutions
The Arctic University of Norway UiT
The Research Council of Norway
The Scottish Association for Marine Science SAMS
University of Bergen
University of Oslo


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