State and parameter estimation of microalgal photobioreactor cultures based on local irradiance measurement

  • Su W
  • Li J
  • Xu N
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Local photosynthetic photon flux fluence rate (PPFFR) determined by a submersible 4π quantum micro-sensor was used in developing a versatile on-line state estimator for stirred-tank microalgal photobioreactor cultures. A marine micro-alga Dunaliella salina was used as a model organism in this study. On-line state estimation was realized using the extended Kalman filter (EKF), based on a state model of the photobioreactor and on-line local PPFFR measurement. The dynamic state model for the photobioreactor was derived based on mass-balance equations of the relevant states. The measurement equation was established based on an empirical correlation between the microalgal biomass concentration and the local PPFFR measured at a fixed point inside the photobioreactor. An internal model approach was used to estimate the specific growth rate without the need of state-based kinetic expression. The estimator was proven to be capable of estimating biomass concentration and specific growth rate, as well as phosphate and dissolved oxygen concentrations in a photobioreactor illuminated with either fixed or time-varying incident radiation. The quantum sensor was shown to be robust and able to quickly respond to dynamic changes in local PPFFR. In addition, the quantum sensor outputs were not affected by bubble aeration or agitation within the typical operating range. The strong filtering capacity of EKF gives the state estimator superior performance compared to direct calculation from the empirical biomass/local PPFFR correlation. This state estimation system makes use of inexpensive and reliable sensor hardware to report key process dynamics of microalgal photobioreactor cultures on-line, enabling improved operation of such a process. © 2003 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Kalman filter
  • Microalgae
  • Photobioreactor
  • Quantum sensor
  • State estimationA

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