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Prioritization of prospective third-generation biofuel diatom strains

Saranya, G and Subashchandran, MD and Mesta, P and Ramachandra, TV (2018) Prioritization of prospective third-generation biofuel diatom strains. In: Energy, Ecology and Environment, 3 (6). pp. 338-354.

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Official URL: http://doi.org/10.1007/s40974-018-0105-z


Energy has been playing a pivotal role in the progress and prosperity of a nation. Growing demands with dwindling stock of fossil fuels with the associated greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint and the consequent changes in the climate during the post-industrialization era have necessitated the exploration for sustainable energy alternatives. Biofuels are gaining importance as viable alternatives to fossil fuels during the last decade. Microalgae, especially diatoms, have shown prospects to be viable third-generation biofuel feedstocks, due to its higher lipid productivity, shorter cycling time and ubiquitous presence. This investigation focuses on identifying robust diatom strains that can sustain the vagaries of nature and yield higher lipid. This would avert the imminent risks of contamination associated with pure cultures and higher costs. The current research involved inventorying diatom consortia across diverse lentic and lotic habitats of the Aghanashini estuary with varied levels of nutrients primarily influenced by distribution of flora and fauna to understand the role of environmental parameters and nutrient levels in species composition, community structure. This effort is an essential prelude to phyco-prospecting potential candidates for third-generation biofuel production. The results obtained from the present study provide insights into an optimal habitat conditions, more specifically ideal nutrient concentrations for enhanced growth of different clusters of diatoms, a determining factor for higher biomass and lipid productivity. Multivariate statistical analyses revealed an occurrence of 27 tolerant diatoms species belonging to genera’s Amphora, Cyclotella, Navicula, Nitzschia and Pleurosigma. Linkages of the dominant and productive clusters of diatoms with habitat nutrient concentrations were investigated through agglomerative hierarchical clustering. Probable empirical relationship among varying environmental conditions and corresponding lipid content of diatoms were explored through regression analyses. Investigations of species tolerant to higher nutrient loads and assessment of lipid aided in prioritizing the strains with benefits of phyco-remediation as well as prospects of biofuel.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Energy, Ecology and Environment
Publisher: Joint Center on Global Change and Earth System Science of the University of Maryland and Beijing Normal University
Additional Information: The copyright for this article belongs to Joint Center on Global Change and Earth System Science of the University of Maryland and Beijing Normal University.
Keywords: Biomass; Diatom; Estuary; Lipid accumulation; Microalgae; Third-generation biofuel
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Division of Mechanical Sciences > Centre for Sustainable Technologies (formerly ASTRA)
Date Deposited: 03 Aug 2022 11:04
Last Modified: 03 Aug 2022 11:04
URI: https://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/75117

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