Corn is a popular animal feed, and is a good representative of the feedstock commercial market. Algae has a much shorter yield-cycle than corn, and thus significantly reduces total growth time (from planting to harvest) and also greatly improves total annual yield.

That is, with algae, you get multiple harvests in a single year rather than just one with corn, while at the same time also reducing costs. Nitrogen and Phosphorous are important components of animal feed.

Accordingly, a study was performed to determine if algae could convert N and P into animal feed in smaller land acreage than crops such as corn(2). At the same time, this study sought to optimize the nutritional value of algae produced for animal feed.

An array of PBR101s was programmed to simulate solar radiation and day length. Pond cultures were isolated and pH was controlled by the addition of CO2. As a result, a variety of pure strains were isolated in the lab from the pond cultures and determined to be appropriate for pond inoculation based on several requirements, including maximization of the nutritional value of algae for animal feed, optimization of pathogen inactivation methods, and quantification and control of any toxic cyanobacteria.

References: 2. Shelton Murinda, Marcia Murray, et al., (2015) 115th General Meeting, American Society for Microbiologists