KWRRI Research Reports


Continuous flow algal cultures were grown under three different growth conditions using secondary sewage treatment plant effluent as the growth medium. The only variable within each run was the hydraulic residence time. The concentrations of growth regulating nutrients were varied between the runs so comparisons of the algal mass, composition, nutrient uptake, and genera could be made. The importance of CO2 availability for algal growth was also studied. A kinetic theory which based algal growth on cellular nutrient concentration was verified. The second phase of the study was a batch culture study in which the same growth medium was used as in Phase 1. The objective of Phase 2 was to investigate significant similarities and differences between continuous and batch culture growth under otherwise similar growth conditions.

Carbon dioxide enriched conditions produced as much as ten times the algal mass as CO2 deficient conditions. Algal blooms dominated by blue-green algae were found to be the result of a successional change from green to blue-green algae under CO2 enriched, nitrogen limited conditions. In the batch culture study algae exhibited a luxuriant nitrogen uptake.

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The work upon which. this report is based was supported by funds provided by the United States Department of the Interior, Office of Water Resources Research, as authorized under the Water Resources Research Act of 1964.