Updated on 11 April 2012
The company believes that tapping the ocean for fuel, eradicates the problem of land and moreover if the system works in salt water, then need for fresh water will be eliminated too. Therefore, the company at the moment is currently focused on getting enzymes and fermenting strains that would work in salt water.
Sea6 Energy, which was founded in July 2010, was initially funded by Mr Shrikumar and a few IIT Madras alumini who chipped in about $202,044. Later, one of the co-founders managed to get a crucial government grant. IIT Madras incubated the company giving access to running lab space and functional instrumentation. The company has also been awarded BIPP grant and is soon going to sign the agreement. The company has managed to raise $2.02 million and now the aim is to raise another $8.08 million to build demonstration plant.
"When we set out one-and-a-half years ago, we just had ideas. The theory seemed perfect. We have proved those theoretical assumptions and are able to produce ethanol on lab scale. In the next two years, we should be in a position to have cracked the commercial hurdles. We need to set up pilot facilities to demonstrate this. In two years we should reach the benchmarks to make commercially viable biofuel. If we can develop this technology, we can have all land for food and fuel can come from the sea," concludes the chairman.