Using wastewater to produce a better algae for biofuels

June 14, 2020 |

In New Mexico, New Mexico Consortium scientists looked at whether growing algae for biofuels using wastewater from different sources can lead to a higher end lipid content in the algae. Using wastewater to grow algae would be a cheaper alternative means of cultivation, and if algae grown in a certain type of wastewater has a higher lipid content, this would lead to a higher biodiesel production.

The researchers looked at wastewater from different sources such as municipal wastewater, urban stormwater-ponds, and food wastewater. All of these types of wastewater contains various macro and micronutrients essential for growth. This paper summarizes previous efforts to grow the microalgae Scenedesmus sp. in different wastewater sources, and gives the results of the effectiveness of nutrient and organic substrate removal, CO2 mitigation, and resulting biomass productivities.

Since biomass productivity is a function of growth, the researchers also investigated the extent of functional genomics resources to study the regulation of central carbon metabolism in Scenedesmus.

This review shows that industrial-scale production of algal biomass using wastewater which is rich with organic matter would provide a cost-effective growth conditions that would greatly benefit biofuel feedstock production.

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Category: Research

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