Monday, April 22, 2013
What if you could replace the petroleum molecules that we use in fuel and so many other products with a substitute made from algae?
Emory alum Harrison Dillon will explain how he’s doing just that, as the guest speaker for Emory’s Biology Undergraduate Research Symposium, on Thursday, April 25 at 4 pm in WHSCAB Auditorum.
Solazyme, named one of the “50 Hottest Companies in Bio-energy” for 2011 to 2012 by Biofuels Digest.
During a TEDxAtlanta talk (see above video) in 2010, Dillon explained how he and Wolfson became close friends as college freshmen and dreamed of starting a company together. They parted ways for graduate school. Dillon, who loved biotechnology and genetics, was working on a PhD in human genetics, but halfway through he became disenchanted with the idea of a career in the pharmaceutical industry.
“I started reading the scientific literature about micro-organisms that make stuff that’s flammable,” Dillon recalls. “And I thought, if you could use all this genetics and biotechnology to make organisms that make stuff that burns efficiently, maybe you could make renewable fuel. I called Jonathan and I said, ‘I know what our company’s going to be: We’re going to use micro-algae to make fuel.’ And he said, ‘That’s delusional. I love it.’”
Happy Earth Day!