Microalgae can efficiently fix carbon dioxide through their phototropic metabolism, and have been recognized as a promising bioresource for animal feed, health food, fuel, cosmetic, and pharmaceutical products. However, since microalgae in cultivated medium have a low biomass concentration (0.1–1% w/w), both harvesting and concentration of microalgal biomass are often required prior to the production of commercial products. Efficient and cost-effective dewatering and drying methods for microalgae heavily affect the overall energy consumption and production cost of microalgal products. This review describes the characteristics of commonly used dewatering and drying technologies, and critically evaluates the feasibility for their use to treat microalgal biomass. No single dewatering or drying method can satisfactorily handle all types of microalgae. The suitability of each method depends on the properties of the microalgae suspension, the required process design, the quality of the end product, and the related capital and production costs.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Chemical Engineering(all)
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry