In order to make a large-scale production feasible, the nutrient supply plays a key role, concerning both carbon source and macronutrient availability.
PAR-Lab research is focused on testing several methods for nutrient supply:
- Carbon is the main component of algal elemental composition. It can be delivered as CO2 from flue gas, even though the possibility of using soluble carbonate can overcome issues concerning the transportation and solubility of gaseous CO2.
- Other growth-limiting nutrients are nitrogen and phosphorus, which can be recovered using wastewater. At PAR-Lab, several types of wastewater are tested for microalgal growth, from urban wastes to leachate from landfill. The possibility to recycle nutrients from microalgal biomass is also investigated.