How Inorganic and Organic Pollutants affect the amount of Dissolved Oxygen in the Algae

Andrea Ford, Kaliope McGuire, katherine guest, Ryan Sherman


In our experiment, we tested how organic and inorganic pollutants affect the amount of dissolved oxygen in the algae. The question we worked to answer was “why is there less oxygen in some bodies of water than others?” (French 2014). Based on previous research, the introduction of pollutants has led to a harmful environment for aquatic systems leaded to large amounts of algae. Our hypothesis is that there will be more dissolved oxygen being used in the algae that is manipulated with an organic pollutant than the algae with the inorganic pollutant because decomposers can use more organic pollutant. In our methods we collected data over a long and short period of time and measured the amount of dissolved oxygen in the samples of water with Chlorella. Our samples consisted of an inorganic component, fertilizer, and an organic component, lemon juice, and yeast (the decomposer). In our results we discovered that the low nutrient organic and inorganic components had a higher level of dissolved oxygen than the high nutrient organic and inorganic component in the short term experiment. In the long term experiment, all samples decreased at a similar rate, approaching zero. Given more time we would expect all samples to reach zero in the amount of dissolved oxygen in the water. 

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