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Magnetophoretic harvesting of oleaginous Chlorella sp. by using biocompatible chitosan/magnetic nanoparticle composites

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)575-578
Number of pages4
JournalBioresource Technology
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


The consumption of energy and resources such as water in the cultivation and harvesting steps should be minimized to reduce the overall cost of biodiesel production from microalgae. Here we present a biocompatible and rapid magnetophoretic harvesting process of oleaginous microalgae by using chitosan-Fe3O4 nanoparticle composites. Over 99% of microalgae was harvested by using the composites and the external magnetic field without changing the pH of culture medium so that it may be reused for microalgal culture without adverse effect on the cell growth. Depending on the working volume (20-500mL) and the strength of surface magnetic-field (3400-9200G), the process of harvesting microalgae took only 2-5min. The method presented here not only utilizes permanent magnets without additional energy for fast harvesting but also recycles the medium effectively for further cultivation of microalgae, looking ahead to a large scale economic microalgae-based biorefinement.


  • Chitosan, Harvesting, Magnetic nanoparticle, Medium recycling, Microalgae