Seaweed Processing Systems
Learn how The ONIX Corporation’s dehydration systems can help process seaweed.
Seaweed is actually a macroalgae, and is part of several large species of multicellular marine algae. Seaweed has the ability to be used for a variety of different purposes such as food, animal feed, pharmaceuticals, or fertilizers.
For seaweed to thrive in its environment, it needs seawater, and the presence of sunlight so it can undergo photosynthesis just like any other plant. It also usually requires a firm attachment point on the sea floor, although there are a few species that can freely float through the water. Because seaweed requires sunlight, it is most commonly found closer to shore where the water is shallow and sunlight can reach the bottom. As long as seaweed has these essential things, it can live in a variety of environments from shallow tidal pools to water that is many meters deep. Some seaweed that has adapted to live in tidal pools must be impervious to occasional drying, but still requires seawater in some amount.
As stated previously, seaweed has a variety of uses, and is thus farmed or taken from its natural habitat. Up to 10 million tonnes of seaweed is used a year to make different products for commercial and industrial use. In Asia, seaweed has a large use in the food industry. It is used in soups, sushi wraps, and as a food additive.
Seaweed is also harvested and cultivated for the extraction of alginate, agar, and carrageenan. These substances are known as hydrocolloids, which are commonly used as food additives. The food industry likes to utilize it for their gelling, water-retention, and emulsifying physical properties. Another wonderful use for seaweed is its use as an alternative and sustainable source of food and animal feed ingredients.
Alginates are often used in the medical industry for wound dressings and dental moulds. In microbiology, agar is used as a culture medium. Commercially, seaweed extract is used in diet pills to help the body feel fuller before eating.
Seaweed also works as a filtration system. Its photosynthesis creates a large affinity for nutrients which allows for the removal of undesired nutrients in the water. Some of these may include ammonia, ammonium nitrate, nitrite, phosphate, iron, copper, and CO2. Because of its nutrient density, some seaweed can be used as fertilizers, compost for landscaping, or to help combat erosion through its burial in beach dunes.
Seaweed can benefit from rotary drying, size reducing, and material handling. The ONIX Corporation’s processing systems can handle numerous materials and co-products that you may not know what to do with or want a better more effective way to process. We have the ability to work with materials such as, but not limited to, apple pomace, citrus pomace, sludge, alfalfa, bagasse, coffee grounds, sawdust, seaweed and much more. Our equipment is engineered to fit your specific needs. If you feel that The ONIX Corporation may be of assistance to you, please don’t hesitate to research more about our alternative fuel systems, including rotary drum dryers and material handling solutions. Whether you’re looking for a new solution to process seaweed, or something else, it never hurts to give us a call to learn more.
Learn more about our Rotary Drum Drying Systems and how they can help with processing and drying seaweed.