Publication
Title
Continuous cultivation of microalgae yields high nutrient recovery from nitrified urine with limited supplementation
Author
Abstract
Microalgae can play a key role in the bioeconomy, particularly in combination with the valorisation of waste streams as cultivation media. Urine is an example of a widely available nutrient-rich waste stream, and alkaline stabilization and subsequent full nitrification in a bioreactor yields a stable nitrate-rich solution. In this study, such nitrified urine served as a culture medium for the edible microalga Limnospira indica. In batch cultivation, nitrified urine without additional supplements yielded a lower biomass concentration, nutrient uptake and protein content compared to modified Zarrouk medium, as standard medium. To enhance the nitrogen uptake efficiency and biomass production, nitrified urine was supplemented with potentially limiting elements. Limited amounts of phosphorus (36 mg L−1), magnesium (7.9 mg L−1), calcium (12.2 mg L−1), iron (2.0 mg L−1) and EDTA (88.5 mg Na2-EDTA.2H2O L−1) rendered the nitrified urine matrix as effective as modified Zarrouk medium in terms of biomass production (OD750 of 1.2), nutrient uptake (130 mg N L−1) and protein yield (47%) in batch culture. Urine precipitates formed by alkalinisation could in principle supply enough phosphorus, calcium and magnesium, requiring only external addition of iron, EDTA and inorganic carbon. Subsequently, the suitability of supplemented nitrified urine as a culture medium was confirmed in continuous Limnospira cultivation in a CSTR photobioreactor. This qualifies nitrified urine as a valuable and sustainable microalgae growth medium, thereby creating novel nutrient loops on Earth and in Space, i.e., in regenerative life support systems for human deep-space missions.
Language
English
Source (journal)
Journal of environmental management. - London
Publication
London : 2023
ISSN
0301-4797
DOI
10.1016/J.JENVMAN.2023.118500
Volume/pages
345 (2023) , p. 1-10
Article Reference
118500
ISI
001052880800001
Pubmed ID
37542810
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
Full text (open access)
Full text (publisher's version - intranet only)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Record
Identifier
Creation 28.09.2023
Last edited 04.02.2024
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