Date of Award

2015

Degree Type

Thesis

Department

Chemical and Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

Belovich, Joanne M.

Subject Headings

chemical engineering, algae, biofuel, biofuels, Scendesmus dimorphous S. dimorphous, Bowden, Dustin, gravity settler, downward flow inclined gravity settler, inclined gravity settler, Cleveland State University, settling velocity

Abstract

With recent concerns over the environmental implications of burning fossil fuels coupled with the depletion of fossil fuel reserves an alternative source of energy isneeded. Algae derived biofuels may be an effective replacement for transportation fuels as they are carbon neutral and have a high area productivity. Algae is superior to terrestrial plants as a biofuel source due to its high oil productivity and efficiency along with the fact that it will not displace food production. Currently the largest obstacle to the implementation of commercial algae to biofuel processes is algae dewatering. The separation of algae from water is difficult due to the dilute concentration of the algae suspension and the extremely low settling velocity of the algae biomass. This work investigates recent improvements to the downward flow inclined gravity settler which has the potential to unlock this much needed process. Additionally, an investigation into algae settling velocity, a field which has received little attention, is also discussed

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