Wastewater treatment using Algae in a Photobioreactor

The Invention The invention uses an efficient, cheap and ecologically safe hybrid photobioreactor for simultaneous industrial wastewater detoxification and microalgal biomass production. It is cheap and self-sustaining and makes use of known technologies. Waste water is treated in a reactor containing active aerobic micro-organisms. Oxygen is fed to the micro-organisms from a second compartment separated from the reactor by a gas permeable membrane. This compartment is contains photosynthetic algae which produce oxygen when exposed to sunlight and consume CO2 produced by the aerobic micro-organisms. The algae reproduce and also become energy-rich biomass. The Need Wastewater treatment is of huge importance to the environment, but conventional methods suffer from both high cost and the necessity of disposing of high levels of contaminants that are extracted from the water. There is a need for an efficient low-cost method of treating wastewater that is also environmentally friendly. Toxic compounds lend themselves to breakdown in the presence of oxygen and using aerobic bacteria to perform this has been known for some time, but the problem of transporting oxygen to the bacteria has been a major obstacle to implementing this solution. Potential Applications Implementation of reactors could be used in factories with effluents containging organic pollutants and at the municipal level as well.

Advantages The advantages of the invention are 1) Safety
• there is no contamination of atmosphere with hazardous pollutants during photosynthetic aeration.
• Only sunlight energy will be utilized
• No exposure to microbiological contaminations

2) Cost
• Commercialization of algal biomass will reduce cost of wastewater treatment
• Solar energy for production of oxygen
• Windfall production of algal biomass

Patent US provisional patent filed Tech Transfer Officer Mr. Larry Loev Office: +972-3-6406544 Fax: +972-3-6406675 Mail: Larry.loev@ramot.org

Inventor(s): Konstantin Bloch, Pnina Vardi

Type of Offer: Licensing

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