Archive:The Algae Trials
|The Algae Trials|
Release status: obsolete [box doku]
|Description||A series of experiments with algae|
What can we do with algae? Supposedly, algae is a super food, can be used as biofuel, and even be made into yoga mats. Let's give it a shot.
First series of experiments: how easy is it to grow algelae, and what's the best way to do it?
Mostly, algae seems to be sold as "super food", in a dried und thus pretty dead condition. Getting alive algae was a bit harder, but there are some aquaristic shops in Germany that sell live algae. I decided to use Chlorella algae for this experiment. It seems to be a fatty algae, which is nice since I wanted to try and use it to make biodiesel. It's also a fresh water algae, and happened to be the only fresh water algae the shop I bought it at was selling.
I bought 500ml of "algae", and started the experiments.
Experiment 1: does it grow at all?
- 500ml algae
- 500ml water
- 1 1l transparent glass wine bottle
- Aug 28, afternoon: fill algae and water into bottle. Shake. Placed in a somewhat bright spot inside
- next few days: shake regularly
- Aug 31, afternoon: there's some algae floating around the bottle, more than before. So the algae seems to grow. Also, there seems to be enough to do some more experiments.
Experiment 2: how does air help the growing process?
- 1l algae water from exp. 1
- 1l water
- 2 1l bottles
- small air stone
- aquarium air pump
- Aug 31, afternoon: put the same amounts of water and algae into the bottles. Put the air stone connected to the airpump into one of the bottles and turn it on.
- Sep 1, afternoon: feeding. Having not tried this before was probably a bad idea, but let's give a shot. I bought a small pipette (one for a 10ml bottle), and gave two fillings of normal plant fertilizer into each bottle.
- Roughly a week later: The algae with the airstone in it seems to have not grown as much as the one without it. We need to repeat this eventually.
Experiment 3: Produce a lot of algae
- Algae water from the previous experiments
- Algae reactor
- Built the algae reactor in a few iterations
- Run the algae reactor for a long time: 
- Frequently get the algae out into different bottles and refill the reactor with water and nutrients