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Monday, January 27, 2020

Kiverdi - We Can Transform Carbon Dioxide and Other Gases Into High-valued Proteins, Oils, Nutrients and Bio-based Products

What if we could create food from thin air?

What if we could rescue our oceans from plastic?

What if we could replenish our soil with the nutrients they once had?

What if we didn’t have to feed fish with fish?

What if every company could eliminate all carbon waste from their supply chain?

CARBON TRANSFORMATION IN ACTION

At Kiverdi, we are breaking the rules on how things are created. We exist to replace the old extractive systems, and revolutionize them with new forms of sustainable production that are good for business and the planet.

Carbon transformation involves breaking down carbon materials into their fundamental elements and building them back up into a range of bio-based products that are friendlier to our planet.

In recognizing that the existing supply chain model is unfit for the needs of our planet and growing population, we have created a series of commercial solutions that set a new bar in the circular economy by transforming carbon instead of extracting further resources from our planet.

With 50+ patents granted or pending on our NASA-inspired technology, we are addressing key supply chain challenges from price volatility, land and water usage, to overall efficiency all while creating new ways of making products that leverage existing resources and are less extractive and detrimental to our planet.

Much like the NASA life-support studies concluded 50 years ago, we need alternatives that require less land and water while still enabling us to create crops that feed people and power industry.” — Dr. Lisa Dyson, featured in the NASA TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER PROGRAM

The inspiration behind Kiverdi began in the 1960’s with NASA on a quest for deep space travel.

The scientists, challenged with how to produce food for a year-long mission with limited space and resources, soon discovered a special class of microbes. These natural single-cell organisms, specifically, called hydrogenotrophs, act like plants in converting carbon dioxide into food.

The concept was simple. Astronauts would exhale CO2, which would be captured by the microbes, then converted, with other inputs such as power and water, into food, which would feed the astronauts. The astronauts would exhale CO2, further enabling the hydrogenotrophs to continue producing an endless cycle of nutrients.

Leveraging NASA’s concepts, we are applying the same thinking to our planet. Not only are we capturing our over abundance of CO2, but we are using it as the key input in creating nutrients and bio-based products.

With 36 billion tons of CO2 emitted around the globe each year, we know our work is just beginning. We have 46+ patents granted or pending of carbon transformation technology that can be applied to a range of industries. We are not just reducing carbon dioxide emissions, but also leading a new era of sustainable production on how we make the food and everyday products to support our growing population. 

Our Team

We are a team of passionate scientists, engineers and business leaders who all share a common commitment to finding real-world solutions to the resource challenges we face as our population continues to grow. We share a vision of a cleaner, more secure, and wholly sustainable tomorrow.

Our technology has been developed in partnership with Lawrence Berkeley Labs and SRI International, and with funding from the US Department of Energy's BETO, the US Department of Energy's ARPA-E, the California Energy Commission, the Iowa Economic Development Authority, and the Quebec government and governments in Europe.

1. HOW WE MAKE AIR-BASED PROTEIN

The inspiration behind Air Protein began in the 1960’s, with NASA, on a quest for deep space travel.

The scientists of NASA, challenged with how to produce food for a year-long mission with limited space and resources, soon discovered a special class of microbes. These natural single-cell organisms, specifically, called hydrogenotrophs, act like plants in converting carbon dioxide into food.

NASA INSPIRATION

CREATING A CLOSED-LOOP CARBON CYCLE

The concept was simple. Astronauts would exhale CO2, which would be captured by the microbes, then converted, with other inputs such as power and water, into food, which would feed the astronauts. Then these astronauts would exhale CO2, further enabling the hydrogenotrophs to continue producing an endless cycle of nutrients.

This closed-loop carbon cycle is now the foundation of a new era of sustainable food production by creating food from CO2. 

TED TALK: A Forgotten Space Age Technology Could Change How We Grow Food

HOW WE MAKE AIR-BASED PROTEIN

JUST LIKE PLANTS: Traditional agriculture already shows us a way of producing food from the elements in the air. By introducing our new air-based agriculture, we are able to transform elements found in the air and convert them into nutritious protein, but in a matter of days instead of months, and without the reliance of agricultural land.


OUR PROPRIETARY PROBIOTIC PRODUCTION PROCESS

The fundamental process of making Air Protein is similar to making soy flour, however, requires less resources and time to make a higher protein content. 

1) The inputs:

Carbon source: When crops grow, they need a carbon source and they extract carbon from the atmosphere in the form of CO2, which is abundant and all around us. Similarly, Air Protein flour uses the elements found in the air we breathe, like CO2 as a carbon source. After all, we are a carbon-based life form that needs carbon to survive and we get that carbon through our food.

Energy source: All living organisms need a source of energy. Crops get it directly from the sun. Our probiotic production process can get its energy from the sun in the form of solar power, but it can also use wind, geothermal, or hydroelectric power. The power is used to split water. 

Seeds: Soy grows from initial soybean seeds, while Air Protein flour is made by a special class of microbes called hydrogenotrophs. 

2) Growth & time:

While the medium of growth for crops is the soil which requires extensive arable land, the medium of growth for Air Protein flour is water and does not require any arable land and can scale vertically. The process takes place in fermentation vessels, similar to what you use to make yogurt or beer. Growth occurs through a proprietary probiotic production process where the hydrogenotrophs are able to consume the CO2 and other elements to produce amino acids. While crops require months to go from seed to harvest, Air Protein’s probiotic production process is ready for harvest in hours.

3) Product:

The final soybean that is produced is mainly made up of oil and protein, with the oil extracted to make a soy protein flour. Similarly, Air Protein flour is produced but doesn’t require additional extraction and has an ~80% protein content (compared to 40% in typical soy protein flour).  

2. REVERSE PLASTICS

Solving The Plastics Crisis With A Circular Technology That Transforms Plastic Into Biodegradable Materials 

By 2050, it’s projected that we’ll have MORE PLASTIC THAN FISH in our ocean.

But, what if we could RESCUE OUR OCEANS from plastic pollution?

CREATING A WORLD FREE OF PLASTIC WASTE

REVERSE PLASTICS provides a revolutionary technology to combat our plastic crisis by transforming plastic waste into a range of biodegradable materials.

TRADITIONAL RECYCLING
  • Requires complex plastic sorting
  • Limited to producing the same plastic 
  • Limited to 7-9 cycles before turning into trash
REVERSE PLASTICS
  • Can transform any carbon-based material
  • Designed to create new biodegradable materials & packaging
  • Creates fresh high-quality materials with every cycle
REVERSE PLASTICS IN ACTION

We break apart plastic into its fundamental hydrogen and carbon building blocks. The way we do this is through a process called  gasification.


Gases are bubbled through a liquid where the bio-catalysts are held in liquid suspension. The bio-catalysts convert  the gases into biodegradable materials, such as biodegradable polymers.

The results are biodegradable polymers that can be used in a variety of applications from packaging, bottles, bags, and more.

These materials can then be transformed again and again. Or, if they end up in the environment, they will decompose in a matter of months.

3. REVIVE SOIL

Increasing Crop Yield With Organic Nutrients That Shift CO2 From The Air To The Soil

Modern Agriculture is under UNPRECEDENTED strain with farmers struggling to find solutions to produce reliable crop yields and prevent further soil depletion.

What if we could REPLENISH our soil with nutrients in a way that increases crop yield?

MORE FOOD PER ACRE

REVIVE SOIL is a new class of organic crop nutrients that improves crop yields using microorganisms that also return organic carbon to depleted soil.

TAKING ON DROUGHTS

Crops will also build resilience to high-stress environments, making them less sensitive to factors like droughts, intense sunlight or wind.

CARBON SINK

The soil also has the ability to act as a major carbon sink, further reducing the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere while simultaneously increasing soil fertility.

ORGANIC OVER SYNTHETIC

While synthetic fertilizers boost short term productivity, they also kill living microorganisms, alter the pH balance, and damage surrounding waterways. REVIVE SOIL helps revitalize plants by enhancing nutrient and water absorption to improve overall yield and health of the surrounding environment.

INDOOR FARMING FRIENDLY

REVIVE SOIL supplies nutrients directly to plants through their leaves and seeds, making them great for hydroponics and vertical, indoor farming solutions.

MORE FOOD LESS LAND

Increasing crop yields, quality, and resiliency means we can fully utilize our existing agricultural land without needing to clear more forests and eco-systems to meet the growing demand for food production.

How We Move CO2 from the Air to the Soil?

CO2, Nitrogen, Hydrogen, and water are added with mineral nutrients to our proprietary bio-reactors.
Gases are bubbled through a liquid where the bio-catalysts are held in liquid suspension. The bio-catalysts work on converting the gases into crop nutrients that are rich in organic matter and nutrients.


The nutrients can be used with a range of crops to stimulate natural processes to enhance the health of the soil, tolerance to abiotic stress, and crop quality.

Healthier, more resilient crops means less overall land required for modern agriculture, and less environmental degradation.

4. CO2 AQUAFEED

Meeting The Demand Of Feed With An Alternative Sustainable Protein Source

Aquaculture is the FASTEST GROWING food production sector.

Unfortunately, this growth comes at a cost as the demand of fishmeal requires 15 million tons of wild caught fish per year.

But, what if we didn’t have to feed fish with fish? 

FEEDING FISH  THROUGH CO2

CO2 AQUAFEED is a revolutionary new form of feed that is produced through carbon capture and transformation.

MORE SUSTAINABLE THAN WILD CAUGHT FISH

Traditionally, fishmeal has been produced by harvesting forage fish or low trophic level fish from the ocean. These fish would otherwise fill an essential role in the base of the marine food chain. CO2 AQUAFEED offers a protein feed solution that is nutritionally comparable to traditional fish feed but can be scaled quickly, efficiently, and without the need for additional wild caught fish.

MORE SUSTAINABLE THAN SOY AND WHEAT

CO2 AQUAFEED is a non-GMO option that has a more nutritious profile, resulting in healthier, nutrient-rich fish.  The production of CO2 AQUAFEED also requires 10,000x less land and 2,000x less water compared to soy protein.

EFFICIENT SCALABLE SUSTAINABLE

How We Make Aquafeed from CO2?


CO2, Nitrogen, Hydrogen, and water are added with mineral nutrients to our proprietary bio-reactors.
Using renewable energy, we begin the gas process where our bio-catalysts convert the elements into nutrients. 

The result is CO2 Aquafeed - a complete protein that has the same nutritional value as protein from wild caught fish.

CO2 Aquafeed is fed to fish farms, creating a more sustainable way of feeding fish by providing an alternative to the 15 million tons of wild caught fish currently used to support the aquaculture demand. 

5. CUSTOM CYCLE

Reaching Circular Economy Goals With Custom Closed Loop Systems 

We work with partners to create a CLOSED LOOP SYSTEM, converting a diverse range of inputs into new valuable products and packaging.

ADDED VALUE
By creating new products from materials that would otherwise go to waste

PRICE STABILITY
By accessing feedstock sources that don’t compete with commodities

SUPPLY CHAIN CERTAINTY
By managing internal controls, independent of external factors

FULLY CUSTOMIZABLE SOLUTIONS

CASE IN POINT: TO CREATE PALM OIL WITHOUT DESTRUCTION OF OUR RAINFORESTS
An example of how carbon transformation can create value from an existing production process and reduce the need for new materials is the production of a palm oil alternative. By transforming carbon by-products, we are able to create an oil that is better than palm oil in serving the functional needs for a range of everyday products- from soaps, to detergents and shampoos. This could reduce the prevalence of conventional methods of making palm oil, which currently contribute to the deforestation of rainforests, resulting in widespread losses of biodiversity and the destruction of habitats of many endangered species.

Inputs can include any material that is carbon-based  (eg. plastics, textiles, carpets, diapers).

Outputs can include bio-polymers for biodegradable products, oils, or organic crop nutrients. 

How We Create Closed Loop Systems?

Every Custom Cycle begins with a customized assessment of the supply chain to best understand and address key issues and opportunities.

A custom solution will be designed to be seamlessly integrated into the existing production process. 
We work collaboratively to install a custom solution within the production process.

Through our circular technology, we convert discarded by-products into new raw materials that could be sold or used in another part of the supply chain. 

An example would be the value created from collecting textiles that would otherwise be discarded in the production of clothing.  Any extra textiles from the production process that might go to waste could be transformed into new textiles or biodegradable materials needed for packaging and labeling.

Source: Kiverdi

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