National University of Ireland, Galway

National University of Ireland, Galway (Ireland)
Work package one
Macroalgae pilot facility

Over the past decade, NUI Galway has developed technical expertise in open sea cultivation of macroalgae (seaweed). To date, it has grown native species of kelp and other species with commercial value/interest, including the red algae Palmaria palmata (‘Dulse’) and Asparagopsis sp. (no common name). It is contributing to EnAlgae by developing a large-scale macroalgal pilot facility which will be used to grow the kelps Saccharina latissima (‘Sugar kelp’) and Alaria esculenta (‘Murlins’) with the aim of increasing productivity of a hectare plot. By closely monitoring the environmental conditions of the site, NUI Galway hopes to create a much greater insight into how macroalgal yield is influenced by surrounding habitat. In addition to the production of algal biomass, both the sea site and the onshore hatchery facility will be used to demonstrate the cultivation and harvesting methods to stakeholders from across NW Europe.