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A Novel Photobioreactor for Algae Cultivation

May 9th, 2011 | No Comments | Posted in Algae-Photobioreactor

This is to give a brief account on a patent which I recently came across. Though photobioreactors provide much more advantages over open cultivation systems, still more work has to be done in making them cost effective to set up and to operate than conventional pipe reactors and which give high algae yields.

This invention describes such a flow-through photobioreactor, which contains at least one thermoplastic multi-wall sheet having an upper layer and a lower layer arranged between at least two sidewalls, at least one inner wall and two or more end caps. The process for the production of a biofuel with this flow-through photobioreactor is also explained.

The flow-through photobioreactor and process explained in the invention have the following advantages: genetically engineered microbes that give higher yields cannot escape into the environment, water in the system does not evaporate, no weeding (presence of unwanted algae), UV light from the sun is filtered out by the reactor walls, temperature control is possible, and CO2 from power plants, breweries, etc. can be artificially fed to increase yield. The photobioreactor is also less expensive to build than pipe reactors and may have low energy costs to operate, because little or no energy is needed for agitation and pumping in gravity assisted embodiment.

Read more from this patent


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