Work Algae, Party All Night - How the addition of fertilizer affects the growth rate of algae.

Zachary Lewis, Erin Massey, Ashlyn Mullin, Heath Moorman, Elizabeth Dawkins


Algae is rapidly becoming an emerging resource in the challenge of creating a renewable energy source. Due to its rapid growth rate and ease of growing, algae is a good resource to turn to for the creation of biofuels. For our experiment, we measured and analyzed algae growth with the addition of increasing concentrations of fertilizer. We measured the initial and final cell density of algae after a week had passed in each water and fertilizer solution to see which one had the highest growth rate. Our results, which ultimately demonstrated cell death in certain fertilizer chemicals, can be used in the continuing advancement in the production of sustainable biofuels.

Full Text:



Ghasemi, Y., S. Rasoul-Amini, A. T. Naseri, N. Montazeri-Najafabady, M. A. Mobasher, and F. Dabbagh. 2012. Microalgae biofuel potentials (Review). Applied Biochemistry and Microbiology 48: 126-144.

Forjan, E. F. Navarro. M. Cuaresma, I. Vaquero, M. C. Ruiz-Dominguez, Z. Gojkovic, M. Vazquez, M. Marquez, B. Mogeda, E. Bermejo, S. Girlich, M.J. Dominguez, C. Vilchez, J. M. Vega, and I. Garbayo. 2015. Microalgae: fast-growth sustainable green factories. Critical Reviews in Environmental Science and Technology 45: 1705-1755.

Conte, F. S. Pond Fertilization: Initializing an Algal Boom, [Online], Available: Accessed [5 Oct 2016].

Korbitz, H., T. Johnson, A. Forbes. 2011. Effects of Different Fertilizers on Algal Development, [Online], Available: Accessed [26 Oct 2016].

Smith, J. H., G. D. Tilman, and J. D. Nekola. 1999. Eutrophication: impacts of excess nutrient inputs on freshwater, marine, and terrestrial ecosystems. Environmental Pollution 100: 179-196.


  • There are currently no refbacks.