BOULDER - Superior Ecotech LLC will launch a $10,000 Kickstarter campaign Thursday to fund the construction of an algae greenhouse on the rooftop of Upslope Brewing Co. in Boulder.

The algae will "soak up" carbon dioxide emissions from the brewery and then be converted to omega-3 oils and other useful products.

"The money from the Kickstarter campaign will allow us to build a pilot-scale demonstration of our algae growing technology and really help us move forward as a business," said Daniel Higgs, one of the company's co-founders. The campaign goes live Thursday, click here.

Boulder-based Superior Ecotech was co-founded in June of last year by University of Colorado-Boulder students Higgs, Philip Calabrese, Nicole Reed-Fry and Iowa State University students Matteo del Ninno and Martin Gross.

The group will be competing for $1.3 million in prize money April 10 in Houston as part of the Rice University Business Plan Competition.

The students have spent the last few years developing an algae grower designed for use at craft breweries. The technology tackles a problem for Colorado's beer business: reducing brewery carbon-dioxide emissions in a cost-effective, sustainable way, Higgs said. Algae "soak up" waste carbon dioxide and convert it to omega-3 oils and other useful products.

Superior Ecotech's system requires clean carbon dioxide and sunny outdoor space on the ground or on a roof. Craft breweries are in a unique position to supply both of these needs, he said.

"We're building our pilot at Upslope where they have exactly what we need and are really supporting this project. This algae greenhouse will allow us to prove our business model and optimize our technology while helping them reduce carbon dioxide emissions." Higgs said.

Superior Ecotech's long-term goal is to use its algae oils to produce cost-effective biofuels that can be used as an alternative to fossil fuels.

Tickets to the Kickstarter event can be purchased here.