On the question: "What is needed to start....?" I just got this from ALG1.
He says this outfit has everything you need to get started. He used them and I am soon. http://www.aquaticeco.com/
I still have a question on what to do, or how to handle the 'stuff' that grow's, and how to actually turn that into a burnable liquid known as Diesel. I need that answer before I start the project. Help!
asavedlabrat, your idea sounds good. I had so many questions when I read it, I got kinda emotionally tired. There were so many choices in there.
My Suggestion to keep the Temp up in your shallow pond...
Since your gonna have to build this pond and make a dirt levee from the start, why not 'insulate' the pond itself from the Earth below, and it's temperature and other environmental fluctuations.
Start with a layer of Styrofoam insulation. Dig the foundation into any shape you want and line the hole with Foam. Either a single layer of 2" or a double layer of 4". Make the Foam tightly fitted to each other.
That should keep ol' man winter's influence out of the mix.
Then line the Foam with a good Black Visqueen. Six mil ought to do the job. That will keep unwanted growths and other 'wild life' from your mix, as well as hold the Smelly 'old' water in place until you are ready to change it out.
Put your Dirt on top the Visqueen.
Now you have an environmentally controlled pond.
I think you are right about the 2" of water being enough. However there may be some Chemists who know more about that. Maybe the Water needs to be a little deeper to provide more Oxygen to the growth? I dont know....just musing.
Now for the Clear Visqueen Bird Poop shield.
Good Idea. There are some choices there, and I dont have any idea which choices would be best. There is some ultra-clear, almost like glass, but it can get brittle and fall to pieces in the sun. Oh well! Maybe you'll have to change it out every so often?
How about Glass? Maybe a sheet of glass from the local Glazier would be even better.
Installed at a slant, the glass would be easy to wash the Bird Poop, dust and pollon off with a hose.
Another thought just popped into my head. You may want to surround this Algae factory with some ordinary Houshold window Screen. Bug screen. Cheap and easy to work with, and it should let air throgh and keep some Algae distorting vermin out.
If you put up a sheet of Clear visqueen over the pond. Any fluid is going to rise. It will collect under the sheet of Clear visqueen.
If you give the Visqueen some angle, the droplets will run down the angle to the lowest point. If you want the Evaporate to go back into the pond, put a sharp stick hanging down at the low point. The droplets will run right on down the stick and drop back into the pond.
For temp control of the Algae pond.
During WWII the Brits in N. Africa put up a tent to live in, then put up another tent over the top of the 'house' and would spray water under the upper 'fly' and that dropped the temp inside the 'house' by 10 to 20 degrees. The constant wind going between the House and the Fly and the Water caused some convection, similar to your AC evaporator.
You may have to set a $10 Fan out there. You could get real fancy and put a thermo-switch down in a stretegic place to turn on the fan when needed.
I cooled some meat this way. It might work for the Algae as well.
I made a tent (actually a big tube) to hang the meat in. Visqueen was great stuff to work with there.
I put a $10 fan at one end of the tent, drawing the air from across the meat and out!
At the inlet end of the tent, I made the Hole a lot smaller than the Fan circumference.
The Air pressuer was a lot less inside the tent, so the air temp was a lot less too.
The meat stayed below 40 degrees even though the outside temp was up in the 50's some times.
Yes! I had a good idea, but it required some more adjustments from time to time. The outside air pressure kept sneaking in through holes in my Visqueen. I used a lot of clear celephane 2" tape on that project.
Also I had to re-inforce my small round inlet hole with some stiff wire and tie it off to keep the Fan from sucking it in with the meat.
That's the way things are done when you stop short of your engineering degree.