How Does Sodium Phosphate Affects the Production of Algae (Nannochloropsis Oculata))

Abbie Dorhauer, Mercedez Clark, Paige Duffield, Taylor Cason, Bailee Augustino


It is known that an excess amount of nutrients can lead to the process of eutrophication which is an increase in the supply of organic matter in an ecosystem. Factors such as fertilizer, agricultural waste, and human interaction all have an effect on the collection of excess nutrients in bodies of water. One of the main nutrients, which is also a common additive in the world is sodium phosphate. Studies in the past have shown how sodium phosphate can lead to a growth of algae production (Alnajem et al. 2017). We decided to complete this experiment by analyzing a different strand of algae (Nannochloropsis Oculata). We predicted that throughout a 3 week period we would see a relationship between a greater production of algae when sodium phosphate increases. We began by adding 32µL of sodium phosphate to half of the water bottles after week 1, and repeated this after week 2. Once our trials were completed, we came to the conclusion that the relationship between sodium phosphate and the growth of algae was conclusive. After analyzing the initial and final cell counts of our slides throughout this experiment, we determined that our hypothesis was supported.

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