Table_1_Continuous Cultivation as a Method to Assess the Maximum Specific Growth Rate of Photosynthetic Organisms.DOCX (727.17 kB)
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Table_1_Continuous Cultivation as a Method to Assess the Maximum Specific Growth Rate of Photosynthetic Organisms.DOCX

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posted on 17.10.2019, 04:10 authored by Elena Barbera, Alessia Grandi, Lisa Borella, Alberto Bertucco, Eleonora Sforza

Modeling the growth of photosynthetic organisms is challenging, due to the complex role of light, which can be limiting because of self-shading, or photoinhibiting in the case of high intensities. A case of particular interest is represented by nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria, whose growth is controlled not only by the light intensity, but also by the availability of atmospheric nitrogen in the liquid medium. The determination of the maximum specific growth rate is often affected by many variables that, in batch growth systems, may change significantly. On the other hand, in a continuous system, once the steady state is reached the values of all the process variables remain constant, including the biomass concentration and the specific light supply rate. In this work, the diazotrophic cyanobacterium Anabaena PCC 7122 was cultivated in continuous photobioreactors, to investigate the role of nitrogen, light and residence time on growth kinetics, and to retrieve the value of the maximum specific growth rate of this organism. In addition, the kinetic parameters for temperature and the half saturation constant for nitrogen (3 mg L−1) were measured by respirometric tests. Based on the results of continuous experiments, the specific maintenance rate was found to depend on the light intensity supplied to the reactor, ranging between 0.5 and 0.8 d−1. All these parameters were used to develop a kinetic model able to describe the biomass growth in autotrophic conditions. The maximum specific growth rate could hence be determined by applying the kinetic model in the material balances of the continuous photobioreactor, and resulted equal to 8.22 ± 0.69 d−1.

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