By Shahfizal Musa
Pix by Hairul Azmi Jahid
BANGI, 16 Dec. 2010 - UKM will embark on seven research projects on microalgae, with the goal of commercialising its production.
Micro Algae is deemed as a miracle plant by scientists because of its potential and diverse applications. The tiny photosynthetic plant that make rivers and ocean green could eliminate most of worlds current pressing problems.
If micro algae can be massed produced, it has the potential to end food scarcity and provide a solution to the world inflating energy needs.
Four Letter of Intent (LoI) were signed by UKM today to undertake the projects. UKM was represented by the Dean of the Faculty of Science and Technology Prof Dr Sharim Hj Ahmad who signed the four LoIs with Massey University represented by Professor Yusuf Chisti; with Pahang Technological Research Sdn. Bhd represented by Sazali Mohd. Nor; Oasis Biologics represented by Dr. David Boey and Seri Damai Land represented by its Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Normala Kahar .
The MoUs will initiate research in micro algae and plan for the possibility of mass producing the organism.
Microalgae will also be used to feed fish cultivated in Tasik Chini Hatchery instead of conventional feeds. The fish hatchery is meant to mitigate the depleting quantity of fish in the lake.
In addition microalgae will also be planted in padi fields to fertilise the rice as appose to conventional fertiliser. A total of about RM50 million is need to be spent from its preliminary stage to commercialization with the potential of making Malaysia one of the world’s microalgae supplier.
Present at the ceremony was Head of Tasik Chini Research Centre, Prof Datuk Dr Mushrifah Idris.