Spirulina production in brine effluent from cooling towers
Choonawala, Bilkis Banu
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Spirulina is a blue-green, multicellular, filamentous cyanobacterium that can grow to sizes of 0.5 millimetres in length. It is an obligate photoautotroph and has a pH growth range from 8.3 to 11.0.The large-scale production of Spirulina biomass depends on many factors, the most important of which are nutrient availability, temperature and light. These factors can influence the growth of Spirulina and the composition of the biomass produced by changes in metabolism. Brine effluent from cooling towers of electricity generating plants may provide an ideal growth medium for Spirulina based on its growth requirements, i.e. high alkalinity and salinity. The aim of this research was to optimise brine effluent from cooling towers by supplementing it with salts, in order to use this optimised effluent in a small open laboratory raceway pond in an attempt to increase the biomass production of Spirulina.