The Effects of pH on Picochlorum oklahomense

Natalie Leding, Dezinae Hill, Alex Lakin, Jackelynn Gutierrez


Algae is a multi-cellular organism formed in water when a multitude of nutrients is present. Biofuel can be produced from the oils of algae, and are used for a variety of transportation services. To induce the production of biofuel, the number of algae grown has to be maximized as well. We hypothesize that adding the base will produce more growth, because it will absorb the hydrogen ions from the water and limit the formation of carbonic acid that stunts algae growth. To test this, we added 60 microliters of base of .5m of NAOH to a photobioreactor and compared the growth from the control group, which did not have any NAOH added. After a week of the experimental and control groups being attached to a gang valve and photobioreactors, the results were the same for all groups. The pH of the experimental and control groups lowered to 6 and 7 and they. This means, over time the solution of the experimental group lowered over the week in order to optimize algae growth.

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