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Extracting Natural Blue Pigment from Algae

July 23 2019

How CoorsTek hollow-fiber ceramic membranes extract naturally blue pigment for food and cosmetics.

Golden, Colorado, USA ─ CoorsTek, a world leading engineered ceramics manufacturer, and Deltapore, an industrial water treatment company, recently supplied a hollow fiber ceramic membrane separation technology to considerably ramp up a customer’s production of natural blue pigment. The natural blue pigment, phycocyanin, is extracted from spirulina algae. The value-added phycocyanin pigment is used in biodiesel and biogas as well as pharmaceutical, skin-care, cosmetic, and food applications.

The production of this natural pigment requires reliable and efficient separation technology. In fact, the separation step of the production process accounts for a big part of the financial resources and time allocated to microalgae processing.

“The hollow fiber ceramic membranes filter technology enabled our customer to stabilize the separation process and considerably increase the output without compromising on high cleanliness specifications,” said Andreas Schneider, Executive Vice President, EMEA. “The better-quality end-product allowed our customer to address the growing market demands, and supply a high-quality, unique blue pigment for cosmetics and food applications.”

Another challenge of the processing and separation of the phycocyanin pigment is that the microalgae clog the tubes very fast. The algae separation process requires a daily cleaning which significantly decreases the lifetime of the polymer membranes. Ceramic membranes present an advantage as they withstand better chemical cleaning conditions and thus offer a longer service time despite the frequent cleaning.

Case Study

Cover image for the CoorsTek and Deltapore case study titled: Case Study Ceramic Hollow Fiber Membrane for Microalgae Biomass Separation Process

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About CoorsTek, Inc.
CoorsTek is a leading global supplier of technical ceramics and the partner of choice for technology and manufacturing companies worldwide. With unsurpassed materials expertise, vertically integrated manufacturing, and over 30 facilities across three continents, CoorsTek provides amazing solutions to complex technical challenges in virtually every industry in the global marketplace.

About Deltapore
Your ideal partner for industrial water treatment. With over 15 years’ experience in industrial water treatment, Deltapore can solve your issues regarding water quality in industrial processes. Innovation, sustainability and the environment are the core concepts for Deltapore. Deltapore focuses on the customer and works together in good cooperation to find the right solution. Innovation, Sustainability and Environment are important key concepts for Deltapore. For more information please visit

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