(683c) Coordination of Growth Rate and Lipids Biosynthesis by Nutrients in Microalgae

Chen, M., Wayne State University
Tang, H., Wayne State University
Ma, H., Wayne State University
Garcia, D., Wayne State University
Li, A., Wayne State University
Abunasser, N. J., Wayne State University
Wadumesthrige, K., National Biofuel Energy Laboratory, Department of Chemical Engineering, Wayne State University
Holland, T., Wayne State University
Salley, S. O., Wayne State University

Algae have been recognized as a potential source of biomass for production of biofuels because some algal species can produce and accumulate high levels of oil and other valuable energy storage molecules. The efficiency of biofuels production mainly depends on the rates of algae growth and lipids biosynthesis. Nutrients uptake plays an important role in algae growth and lipids biosynthesis. However, the effect of trace nutrients on algae growth and lipids biosynthesis has not been fully understood. In this study, inductive couple plasma (ICP) was use to examine the nutrients content: Phosphorus (P), Zinc (Zn), Calcium (Ca), Cobalt (Co), Molybdenum (Mo), Manganese (Mn), Iron (Fe), Sodium (Na), Sulfur(S), Silicon (Si) in the algae media that are required for the algae growth as a function of time. Spectrophotometer (HACH) was used to measure the nitrogen content. Moreover, algae growth rate and lipids content are monitored by using optical density and Nile Red methods, respectively. The effects of phosphorus, nitrogen, silicone content on algal growth and lipid content were investigated. This research will identify the mechanism how nutrient uptake will affect the algae growth and lipids biosynthesis and is critical for the bioreactor design and biofuel production.