: Europe Direct Coruña : Europe Direct (English) : Partner Search

Research & Innovation. Croatia

Description and objectives of the project: A Croatian university is looking for partners for the HORIZON2020 call Water innovation: boosting its value for Europe. A Croatian university is purposing a project to show how to reduce the quantity of greenhouse gas, emitted into the atmosphere from the ocean, by iron ions control which has the effect on the phytoplankton growth. University is looking for laboratories, power plants and factories that produce carbon dioxide for research cooperation agreement.

There is generally accepted judgment that too much CO2 (carbon dioxide) is produced according to current industry and lifestyle. As a strong greenhouse gas, the carbon dioxide is believed to be one of the main causes of so called global warming. The carbon dioxide is soluble in marine water, but the solubility depends on the temperature. On even a small raise of temperature the CO2 is emitted back to the atmosphere in great quantities giving additional impact to the greenhouse effect. 

In order to reduce the quantity of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, university suggests initiation of productive consumption of CO2, meaning to initiate primary production of phytoplankton in enormous marine waters, using the CO2 as natural nutrient for phytoplankton. The leading idea was "more phytoplankton, less CO2". Namely, carbon dioxide would not be re-emitted to the atmosphere if it was consumed by phytoplankton, and consequently, additional CO2 can be
absorbed from the air to grow more phytoplankton. But, for such kind of a process the iron (III) bioavailable ion is also needed as the phytoplankton key nutrient, which is usually present in very limited amount. As a consequence, some marine areas are poor in all phytoplankton, fish stock and algae.

A number of experiments on ocean fertilization (from 1985) adding simple as well as complex soluble Fe(III) compounds with inorganic ligands showed very good but short-lived effect on phytoplankton primary production. Primary production was increased in such environment, what represented more food for zooplankton and higher organisms, influencing increase of fish population as well. These promising but eventually unsatisfying results were achieved using such compounds that turn from bioavailable Fe(III) to biounavailable Fe(II) oxides or hydroxides before the plankton could absorb them.

Recently, Croatian university has shown that some soluble Fe(III) complex compounds with organic instead inorganic ligands are stable long enough in marine model water to remain available to the phytoplankton. Still, other ligands have to be investigated in order to determine the optimal fertilizer. A parallel laboratory research is supposed to yield new multifunctional chemical, optical and electric sensors for simultaneous real time monitoring in fresh and marine water of all relevant physical and chemical parameters controlling the process of primary production, such as concentration of CO2, O2, pH, temperature, redox potential, electrical conductivity, etc. New software has to be developed for the new sensors applied in marine environment and connected to analytic instruments for real time both sensor control and data processing.

Field research in both marine aquatorium and/or closed basins offers study of optimization of conditions related to CO2 both lowering and sequestration. That way offers possibility of controlled removal of CO2 emitted by power plants, heating plants and other factories producing carbon dioxide.

By controlling the raise of phytoplankton quantity it is possible to estimate the amount of consumed CO2, its reduced emission and its equivalent to carbon credits what has direct impact to the environment and to the carbon credentials trading on the carbon market. Produced in abundance , phytoplankton can be dissipated and exploited by growing commercial fish stocks, farming consumable algae, or simply dead phytoplankton and diatoms as inorganic

Partner Sought: University is looking for chemical laboratories, biomarine laboratories, power plants, heating plants and other factories that produce carbon dioxide for research cooperation agreement.

Deadline: Deadline for the call: 21-04-2015 17:00:00 (Brussels local time); Deadline for the EOI: 01-03-2015

Project duration: 156 weeks


Axencia Galega de Innovación

Carlos Sánchez Vecino


Publicado por europa en febrero 16, 2015