In a notable achievement at the Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering Conference (CSChE) in Calgary last weekend, a University of British Columbia’s Chemical and Biological Engineering (CHBE) capstone group secured the 2nd place in the highly competitive Zeton Plant Design Competition. The project, titled “Using Algae to Sequester Carbon and Produce Astaxanthin and Fertilizer,” showcased their commitment to addressing carbon emissions and their innovative approach to sustainable engineering.
Meghan Cooke, Veronika Zenova, and Cindy Lam represented the UBC capstone group at the conference, where their project received accolades. Other Capstone group members were Amelia Dai, Lisa Hochhausen, Adam Leung, Siba Saleh and Chris Webster. For the Capstone project, sponsored by Teck Resources, the group tackled the formidable task of designing an industrial-scale microalgae plant capable of sequestering 2,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually. Their meticulous design featured flat-plate photobioreactors to maximize carbon capture efficiency, yielding valuable astaxanthin and biofertilizer. This recognition at the CSChE conference underscores the impact that chemical and biological engineers can make to the pressing global need for innovative carbon reduction solutions.