Cell Density in Algae with Different Solutions

Camden Geary-Henderson, Cole Hennessee, Megan Huss, Chloe Ingram, Lawrence Adegbule


Algae are simple plants that grow through photosynthesis, and can be used as food supplements.
However, algae grows at odd rates, with some bodies of water overflowing with the plant, and others
being barren of it. A danger of large amounts of algae is an algae bloom, which depletes water of oxygen
and nutrients that are necessary for the ecosystem (Ballew, 2015). Algae blooms are caused by the
process of eutrophication, the enhancement of an ecosystem with chemical compounds, and it can be
detrimental to the environment (Kazarian et al. 2015). This led us to the question, what promotes growth
in algae? For our experiment, we are testing the growth of algae when mixed with potassium nitrate, urea,
and ammonia by measuring chlorophyll and cell count that the algae produce. To find this, we added 4ml
of the solutions to our testing chambers. We hypothesized that algae with potassium nitrate added will
grow faster than the other algae mixtures. We found that our independent variables all decreased the
amount of algae in our photobioreactors, which was highly unexpected. Our hypothesis was ultimately
not supported.

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