Wednesday, November 10, 2010: 12:30 PM
255 A Room (Salt Palace Convention Center)
Multiple strains of microalgae have been shown to accumulate lipids to as much as 80% of their dry weight when grown heterotrophically in nitrogen deficient conditions, making algae a promising source of lipids for the production of biodiesel. Currently, glycerol is a waste product from the transesterification step in biodiesel production. We are examining if glycerol could be used as substrate or co-substratewith glucose in dark fermentations of an oleaginous algae. We studied the growth and lipid production of Chlorella protothecoides using glycerol as the carbon source. Cultures grown on glycerol in shake flasks showed similar specific growth rates and final lipid yields to those observed on glucose. Glycerol was also consumed simultaneously with glucose when both were present in the media. These results were replicated with crude glycerol from the production of biodiesel in order to simulate the use of waste glycerol from biodiesel production.