Jul 2015 - Jul 2019

Stimulating the innovation potential of SMEs for a low carbon energy system.

The overall objective of Photofuel is to make a significant contribution to the development of the field of biocatalytic production of solar fuels (normal and branched alcohols and alkanes from C4 to C11)in cyanobacterial and algal microorganisms; and to assess the broad impact of this novel approach to fuel composition (also taking into account other emerging waste- and residue-based fuels) and engine performance in the future. These activities are carried out as part of a joint industrial and academic consortium that encompasses all central but highly diverse areas of engineering (bio, chemistry, engines, and assessment) and social science needed for this challenging task. The production of the selected microalgae strains will be scaled-up outdoor in a GMO compliant facility by A4F. 

Microalgae Species: Chlamydomonas sp., Botryococcus sp., Nannochloropsis sp., Synechocystis sp. and Synechococcus sp.




6 M€


48 months


Volkswagen AG, Germany

Uppsala Universitet, Sweden

Universitaet Bielefeld, Germany

Imperial College Of Science Technology And Medicine, United Kingdom

Universita Degli Studi Di Firenze, Italy

IFP Energies Nouvelles, France

Neste Oil Corporation, Finland

Karlsruher Institut Fuer Technologie, Germany

Centro Ricerche Fiat Scpa, Italy

Volvo Technology Ab, Sweden

Syncom Forschungs - Und Entwicklungsberatung Gmbh, Germany.

A4F Role

A4F will cultivate at a pilot scale the GMO strains in a certified system that guarantees the biosafety procedures required by the European Union. The facility located in Lisbon permits the simultaneous growth of GMOs and WT strains enhancing the replicability of the results.