Screening and Assessing Growth Kinetics of High Lipid Microalgal Strains

The proposed research is anticipated to address several critical questions pertinent to lipid productivity from outdoor cultures. Unlike earlier screening experiments that were based on results from indoor, artificial-light based Erlenmeyer flask experiments, the proposed research assesses the suitability and kinetic parameters of numerous strains under field conditions. The kinetic data is anticipated to offer invaluable insights into the balance between lipid concentrations within a cell versus specific growth rates. The most significant outcome of this research is anticipated to be the output from mathematical models. For example, with reliable models, one can estimate the lipid productivities of various strains from 1,000 acres of raceways at a given location before investing millions of dollars. These models will also allow the algal facility operators to identify the ideal species for a given air temperature, solar radiation, season, or water salinity. The models can also provide invaluable guidance at a more advanced levels, such as: assessing the cost-benefit ratio of CO₂ supplementation, contaminant mitigation, and harvest frequency optimization. Potential beneficiaries from this proposed research include the following: (1) Scientists, engineers, and researchers working in the area of mass production of microalgae; (2) Private investors, entrepreneurs, and farmers who have access to large areas of land and wanting to mass produce microalgae for lipids; and (3) Economists and project planners, who can use the simulation data for conducting economic analysis. Specific deliverables from this project include the following: (1) A shortlist of both freshwater and marine algal strains suitable for outdoor cultivation; (2) Lipid content for all strains suitable for outdoor cultivation; 3) Kinetic parameters for the best strains (up to 10 strains); (4) Mathematical models for estimating lipid productivities; and (5) Presentations (at least 2) and peer-reviewed manuscript (at least 1).

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Program Information: Advanced Research, Biobased Research


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Research and Innovative Technology Administration

    Department of Transportation
    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Johnson, Shawn

  • Performing Organizations:

    Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge

    Agricultural Center
    Baton Rouge, LA  United States  70803
  • Principal Investigators:

    Theegala, Chandra

  • Start Date: 20091201
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20120531
  • Source Data: RiP Project 31389

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01572196
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Department of Transportation
  • Files: RiP
  • Created Date: Aug 4 2015 1:00AM