Explore the Nano World
Wen's Research Group
Wen Zhang, Ph.D., P.E., BCEE
Phone: (973) 596-5520
Fax: (973) 596-5790
Office Location: Colton Hall 211
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Biofuel-producing Algae Cultivation and Harvesting.
The growing potential of algal biotechnology as a resource could be used to tackle many global challenges in energy and the environment. Microalgal biomass is one of the promising feedstock for fertilizers, animal food sources, and other valuable substances such as antioxidants, antibiotics and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). Recently, microalgae are considered as good candidates for biofuel production and have gained enormous research interests. Microalgae can be used for the removal of nutrients (e.g. nitrate, nitrite, and phosphate) from impaired water and the sequestration of CO2, a greenhouse gas resulting in global climate change. Thus, microalgae cultivation, separation from growth media, post-treatment, and biofuel production are all critical to address the challenges in renewable energy generation and sustainable development of the environment. We are currently developing innovative separation processes such as biocoagulation, magnetophoretic separation using magnetic nanoparticle coagulants, and reactive membrane systems.