Biologists of Moscow state University taught the «North» of microalgae to clean wastewater

Chlorella vulgarisBiologists of Moscow state University taught the «North» of microalgae to clean wastewater

The staff of the biological faculty of MSU named after M. V. Lomonosov proved that the waste water in a Northern climate can be cleaned with the help of microalgae, and biomass of algae suitable for conversion into biofuels. About the optimal method for purification of sewage from organic compounds, and nitrogen and phosphorus, scientists reported in a publication released by the journal Algal Research.

Algal ponds for wastewater treatment people created in ancient times, especially in countries where there is surplus solar energy, but there are no stationary treatment facilities. In India in villages and towns use algal ponds for treatment, and when they did, no one knows. The scientific rationale for this technique first put forward by bill Oswald more than half a century ago. In the last decade, the development of technology of sewage treatment has become a popular trend: each year on the subject beyond a few dozen scientific publications.

Photobioreactors are a vessel with the cell suspension of microalgae, which supports the required conditions: uniform illumination, constant temperature and carbon dioxide concentration, oxygen and nutrients. Moreover, it is necessary to constantly stir the suspension with the speed at which the cells will settle to the bottom of the vessel. The shape and construction of different photobioreactors that are different: they can be flat, tubular, spiral.
At the exit of the reactor, the experts check the efficiency of cleaning. Performance indicators two: complete the extraction of pollutants, and speed the time in which the pollutant content in the environment falls to acceptable levels (maximum allowed concentrations).

© MSU M.In.Lomonosovym microalgae Chlorella vulgaris UHCC0027Biologists of Moscow state University taught the «North» of microalgae to clean wastewater© MSU M.In.Lomonosovym microalgae Chlorella vulgaris UHCC0027

For the study, researchers used a strain of microalgae Chlorella vulgaris UHCC0027 selected in South-Western Finland in the areas of its natural distribution. Such photobioreactors algae can be used without additional heating, because all the biological processes effectively occur in the system when the ambient temperature — this is the main achievement of the study.

«The guiding principle of collection and selection of strains for purposes of bioremediation is simple: we highlight the most promising organisms from sewage treatment plants and the surrounding areas. It’s funny that in our work fared well algae from the collection of the Northern species, but no worse than were wild algal community of the wastewater, which in the end is not lost to the «monoculture» efficiency», — says the participant of the study, doctor of biological Sciences Alexey Solovchenko.

In addition, the biomass of microalgae growing on wastewater was suitable for processing into biodiesel with minimal correction — the addition of diesel fuel and additives. Based on the obtained knowledge can be used to create more advanced biotechnology for wastewater treatment and biofuel in a Northern climate.