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Production of Lipids for Biofuels Through Mixotrophic Growth of a Mixed Microalgae-Cyanobacteria Culture

2011 DOT-RITA Seed Award


Principal Investigators and affiliations:
PI: Dr. Maria Gutierrez-Wing (Louisiana State University, Civil and Environmental Engineering/ Sea Grant)
Co-PI: Dr. Joan King (Louisiana State University)
Co-PI: Dr. Kelly Rusch (Louisiana State University)

Funded: $75,000

Start Date: 7/11/2011

End Date: 6/30/13


Expected Outcomes:

Overall objective: determine the suitability of mixotrophic culture to produce biomass and lipids from a mixed culture of microalgae and cyanobacteria. Specific objectives:

  1. Determine the suitability of a mixed culture composed of a species of Chlorella sp and a cyanobacteria to grow in mixotrophic conditions; and
  2. determination of the effect of different carbon sources on lipid production to explore the possibility of using agricultural waste streams rich in carbohydrates in the production of microalgal biofuels.

This work will generate information for the use of algal mixed cultures for biofuels production, to increase the productivity, reduce contamination and possibly the use of chemical nutrient. An added value for waste streams will be obtained and their environmental impact will be reduced. Culturing native species will reduce the potential negative effects of introduced species.

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