Refereed journal article or data article (A1)

Efficient harvesting of Chaetoceros calcitrans for biodiesel production

List of Authors: Sirin S, Clavero E, Salvado J


Publication year: 2015

Journal: Environmental Technology

Journal name in source: ENVIRONMENTAL TECHNOLOGY

Journal acronym: ENVIRON TECHNOL

Volume number: 36

Issue number: 15

Number of pages: 11

ISSN: 0959-3330


Harvesting is one of the key challenges to determine the feasibility of producing biodiesel from algae. This paper presents experimental results for a cost-effective system to harvest Chaetoceros calcitrans, using natural sedimentation, flocculation, and inducing pH. No efficient sedimentation of microalgal cells was observed only by gravity. By alkalinity-induced flocculation, at a pH value of 9.51, 86% recovery of the cells was achieved with a sedimentation rate of 125 cm/h and a concentration factor (CF) of 4 (volume/volume (v/v)) in 10 min. The maximum photochemical quantum yield of photosystem II (F-v/F-m) of concentrated cells was almost the same as fresh culture (0.621). Commercial flocculants, aluminium sulphate and poly-aluminium chloride (PAC), were also successful in harvesting the studied algal cells. Optimum concentration of aluminium sulphate (AS) could be concluded as 10 ppm with 87.6% recovery and 7.10 CF (v/v) in 30 min for cost-efficient harvesting, whereas for PAC it was 20 ppm with 74% recovery and 6.6 CF (v/v). F-v/F-m yields of concentrated cells with AS and PAC showed a 1% reduction compared to fresh culture. Mg+2 was the triggering ion for alkalinity-induced flocculation in the conditions studied. The rheology behaviour of the concentrated cells was Newtonian with values between 2.2 x 10(-3) and 2.3 x 10(-3) Pa s at 30 degrees C.

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