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Title: A validated model to predict microalgae growth in outdoor pond cultures subjected to fluctuating light intensities and water temperatures

Here, a microalgae biomass growth model was developed for screening novel strains for their potential to exhibit high biomass productivities under nutrient-replete conditions in outdoor ponds subjected to fluctuating light intensities and water temperatures. Growth is modeled by first estimating the light attenuation by biomass according to a scatter-corrected Beer-Lambert Law, and then calculating the specific growth rate in discretized culture volume slices that receive declining light intensities due to attenuation. The model requires the following experimentally determined strain-specific input parameters: specific growth rate as a function of light intensity and temperature, biomass loss rate in the dark as a function of temperature and average light intensity during the preceding light period, and the scatter-corrected biomass light absorption coefficient. The model was successful in predicting the growth performance and biomass productivity of three different microalgae species (Chlorella sorokiniana, Nannochloropsis salina, and Picochlorum sp.) in raceway pond cultures (batch and semi-continuous) subjected to diurnal sunlight intensity and water temperature variations. Model predictions were moderately sensitive to minor deviations in input parameters. To increase the predictive power of this and other microalgae biomass growth models, a better understanding of the effects of mixing-induced rapid light dark cycles on photo-inhibition and short-term biomassmore » losses due to dark respiration in the aphotic zone of the pond is needed.« less
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
  2. The Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 2211-9264; BM0108010
Grant/Contract Number:
AC05-76RL01830; EE0003046
Published Article
Journal Name:
Algal Research
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 13; Journal ID: ISSN 2211-9264
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
59 BASIC BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES; 09 BIOMASS FUELS; biomass growth model; microalgae biofuels; raceway ponds; species-specific characterization; specific growth rate; specific biomass loss rate; chlorella; nannochloropsis; picochlorum
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1233757