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Light control in the production of microalgae: controller optimal CPLux

Grant number: 17/23950-5
Support type:Regular Research Grants
Duration: March 01, 2018 - February 29, 2020
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Chemical Engineering
Principal Investigator:Antonio Carlos Luperni Horta
Grantee:Antonio Carlos Luperni Horta
Home Institution: Centro de Ciências Exatas e de Tecnologia (CCET). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil
Assoc. researchers: Cíntia Regina Sargo ; Luiz Henrique Keng Queiroz Júnior ; Marcel Otavio Cerri ; Paula Rúbia Ferreira Rosa ; Paulo Antunes Horta Junior ; Teresa Cristina Zangirolami


This project proposes to deal with challenges posed by the production of substances of high added value from the optimization of techniques and materials related to control and automation of autotrophic microorganisms' cultivation. Both in the conception of integrated biorefinery and in the isolated production of biocomposites or biomaterials, the biotechnology sector has developed several sustainable microalgae production routes. The advances obtained increase the importance of photobioreactors in the eyes of (bio) industries, with emphasis on bio-production and effluent treatment systems. The control of photosynthetically active irradiance (PAI), and its quali/quantitative variation, which largely conditions the synthesis routes of numerous substances and pigments, requires special attention when these systems are compared to conventional bioreactors. In this sense, the present project intends to integrate to an automated pneumatic photobioreactor an PAI controller that can guarantee optimized conditions for microalgal growth with focus on biosynthesis of substances such as phycobiliproteins. This controller will be developed using the free hardware platform Arduino, light sensors, illumination panel combined with ambient light, among other hardware that added to the software to be developed will form the luminosity controller. This product, besides innovating, will reduce costs, increase the regularity and productivity of photobioreactors in operation in the world, as well as stimulate the development and installation of industries for this purpose in Brazil. (AU)