The effect of surface properties on the formation of Scenedesmus
Microalgae are known for their ability to purify wastewater and at the
same time to be able to produce biofuels. The development of microalgal
biofilms has received attention in recent years, as the growth of
microalgae on a substrate facilitates their separation from water. In
the present study, we compared 6 different materials (cork, spongue
towel, denim, plexiglass, stainless steel and silicone rubber) as
substratum to examine their capability on the attachment of algae.
Biomass attachment on the various materials was monitored for 16 days of
cultivation. Different physico-chemical surface properties such as
contact angle, surface energy, point of zero charge (pzc) were examined
in order to elucidate materials properties role on algal attachment.
Plexiglass succeeded the greatest increase in biomass (up to 35 g/m2),
while stainless steel and sponge towel came in the second place both
with 21 g/m2. Based on the results, the contact angle and pzc alone, are
not sufficient for explaining the selectivity of algal cells to get
attached on a surface.