Research Article Open Access

Effect of Salinity, pH, Light Intensity on Growth and Lipid Production of Microalgae for Bioenergy Application

Monika Prakash Rai1, Trishnamoni Gautom1 and Nikunj Sharma1
  • 1 Amity University Uttar Pradesh, India


The crisis of energy producing molecules (fuels) is expected to increase in future, which is currently produced from crude mineral oil. Biodiesel is most reliable, non-toxic, biocompatible liquid fuel that can replace the existing unsustainable sources of energy. Among all the known sources, microalgae display high potential for the production of biodiesel owing to their numerous benefits like higher biomass productivities than plants, no agricultural land requirement, cultivation in waste water and accumulation of 20-50% triacylglycerols. Microalgae biomass and lipid content plays an important role in commercial production of biodiesel. The present work was carried out to develop an axenic culture of a potential microalga Chlorella sp. for high biomass and enhanced lipid accumulation. The important growth parameters like pH, light colour, light intensity and photoperiod were studied for better production of Chlorella biomass. The effect of salinity on cell growth was also studied and compared with normal Fogg’s medium grown cells. The main biomolecules like carbohydrate, protein, lipid and chlorophyll content were also estimated with the help of standard biochemical methods in salt supplemented and without salt Fogg’s medium. The cellular lipid content was increased by growing the cells under different salt concentrations. The micro algal strain showed highest growth of 0.822 g L-1 and 1.021g L-1 in Fogg’s medium and under 0.2 M NaCl supplemented medium respectively. However, the maximum lipid production of 0.1842 g L-1 was estimated by growing the cells in Fogg’s medium including 0.5 M NaCl with slight compromise in cell growth (0.858 g L-1). The lipid content of Chlorella sp. was found to be 26.84% as compared to 14% obtained under normal culture condition. Thus, growing Chlorella sp. under salt supplemented medium and optimizing light requirement will produce high biomass and oil for biodiesel production.

OnLine Journal of Biological Sciences
Volume 15 No. 4, 2015, 260-267


Submitted On: 1 June 2015 Published On: 5 November 2015

How to Cite: Rai, M. P., Gautom, T. & Sharma, N. (2015). Effect of Salinity, pH, Light Intensity on Growth and Lipid Production of Microalgae for Bioenergy Application. OnLine Journal of Biological Sciences, 15(4), 260-267.

  • 194 Citations



  • Microalgae
  • Chlorella
  • Salinity
  • Light Intensity
  • Lipid
  • Biofuel