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Scaled up from indoor to outdoor cultures of Chaetoceros gracilis and Skeletonema costatum microalgae for biomass and oil production

Pérez, Leticia, Salgueiro, Jose Luis, González, Jerónimo, Parralejo, Ana Isabel, Maceiras, Rocío, Cancela, Ángeles
Biochemical engineering journal 2017 v.127 pp. 180-187
Bacillariophyceae, Chaetoceros gracilis, Skeletonema costatum, air, biodiesel, biomass production, environmental factors, fuel production, microalgae, oils, photobioreactors, stearic acid
Adaptability and growth of two marine diatoms, little known today, Chaetoceros gracilis and Skeletonema costatum microalgae, have been studied. Indoor cultures in 5L photobioreactors under controlled conditions and outdoor cultivation in 80L photobioreactors under uncontrolled environmental conditions have been evaluated. Maximum biomass productivities of 28.0±0.16 and 32.0±0.60mgL⁻¹d⁻¹ were obtained when S. costatum was cultivated on large-scale with air or air+CO2 bubbling, respectively, and specific growth rates about 0.13–0.25 d⁻¹ were exhibited. Biomass productivities slightly lower were achieved by C. gracilis and doubling times nearly half, 2.79–2.87 to 4.95–6.30days, were obtained in pilot scale cultures against laboratory scale. Finally, lipid extraction and its analysis were conducted. Palmitic and stearic acids were the major components. Therefore, scale up cultivation of these two species is a feasible process and it allows to obtain a biomass with high potential for biodiesel production.