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Energies 2013, 6(10), 5333-5356; doi:10.3390/en6105333
Article

A Linear Programming Approach for Modeling and Simulation of Growth and Lipid Accumulation of Phaeodactylum tricornutum

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Received: 31 July 2013 / Revised: 2 October 2013 / Accepted: 9 October 2013 / Published: 18 October 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Algae Fuel 2013)
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Abstract

The unicellular microalga Phaeodactylum tricornutum exhibits the ability to accumulate triacylglycerols to a high specific content when nutrients are limited in the culture medium. Therefore, the organism is a promising candidate for biodiesel production. Mathematical modeling can substantially contribute to process development and optimization of algae cultivation on different levels. In our work we describe a linear programming approach to model and simulate the growth and storage molecule accumulation of P. tricornutum. The model is based on mass and energy balances and shows that the organism realizes the inherent drive for maximization of energy to biomass conversion and growth. The model predicts that under nutrient limiting conditions both storage carbohydrates and lipids are synthesized simultaneously but at different rates. The model was validated with data gained from batch growth experiments.
Keywords: Phaeodactylum tricornutum; biofuels; lipid synthesis; modeling; simulation; linear programming; nitrate limitation Phaeodactylum tricornutum; biofuels; lipid synthesis; modeling; simulation; linear programming; nitrate limitation
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Dillschneider, R.; Posten, C. A Linear Programming Approach for Modeling and Simulation of Growth and Lipid Accumulation of Phaeodactylum tricornutum. Energies 2013, 6, 5333-5356.

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