Acid Hungry Heterotrophic Algae Raise Dissolved Oxygen Content

Austin Foxworth, Margaret Gaston, Michael Cobbs


Dissolved oxygen (DO) content of water is an indicator of water quality and hints at pollution that may harm organisms that live in the given environment.  We have been tasked to investigate why some bodies of water have less dissolved oxygen than others and how common household pollutants affect the levels of dissolved oxygen. Previous work has failed to address the connection between the acidity and dissolved oxygen in bodies of water. To make this connection, we did background research on pH levels and their correlation with the oxygen producing nutrients. We carried out this experiment by polluting water samples with a specific phosphorus and nitrogen concentration with acidic properties and measured the pH and the DO levels every week for four weeks. In our research, we explain how acid affects the DO in ponds, lakes and streams because with less oxygen in the water they will have a less healthy water source.  

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