A Practical Approach for Modelling the Growth of Microalgae with Population Balance Equation

Ergys Pahija*, Chi-Wai Hui

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Microalgae are versatile microorganisms with applications in food, energy and fine chemicals, among others. Modelling the dynamics of microalgae inside a photobioreactor is a convenient and inexpensive way to determine the concentration of cells over time. Numerous models have been developed in the literature, but only a few are able to give relevant biological information. Such information can then be used to further improve the production process. The objective of this work was to develop a model for the determination of microalgal dynamics inside a photobioreactor as a function of the environmental conditions, to retrieve the size-specific growth and division rates as well as the number of daughter cells. The results demonstrate how to evaluate the time needed for microalgae to complete a full life-cycle. Inexpensive laboratory-based procedures and mathematical modelling are combined for the determination of relevant biological parameters.
Original languageEnglish
JournalNew Biotechnology
ISSN1871-6784
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • Microalgae
  • Size-specific growth rate
  • Size-specific division rate
  • Number of daughter cells
  • Life-cycle time
  • Population balance

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