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Frequently Asked Questions and Answers
Does F&M do the full GWP® installation?
Yes! We take care of everything: design, construction, installation and start-up.
What material makes up the GWP®’s culture chamber?
The culture chamber is LDPE – UV treated plastic film, normally used for greenhouses covers, with a transparency to solar radiation > 90%.
The plastic culture chamber must be replaced after each growth cycle?
The the plastic culture chamber can be disinfected with HClO and acids (HCl) several times, but we suggest n.1 replacement per year especially for outdoor installation.
What are the mechanisms to avoid biofilm build-up in the plastic culture chamber?
Biofilm is not a big deal. The best strategy is to schedule a cleaning at the end of each cultivation cycle. Panels of the GWP® reactor can be hydraulically separated by valves, so it is possible to clean or replace each single culture chamber individually.
What is the minimum and maximum volume of each GWP®?
At F&M we commercialize two different models of GWP®: the GWP®-II and the GWP®-III. For a detailed description of the volumes and size available please see section
of the website.
Can the GWP® reactor be installed outdoor?
Yes, The GWP® reactor is specifically designed for both indoor and outdoor installation. All electromechanical components have an IP55 or higher.
How much does a GWP cost per litre?
There is a scale factor according to the reactor size. Please, consider the range 25 to 7 €/liter scaling-up from the GWP®-II.24 to the GWP®-II.1250. Concerning the GWP®-III, this is specifically designed for research purposes, and cost per liter depends from the level of automation required, but it is close to 450 €/liter.
Does the price (€/L) include all the necessary equipment (values, pumps, blower, probes etc.) and installation?
How much does the maintenance cost?
This depends a lot on project details and is strongly influenced by the site location and algae strains cultivated, but is in the range 250-1000 €/yr according to reactor size.
Is the GWP® suitable to operate in a semi-continuous mode?
Yes, as long as measures are taken to avoid contamination.
How is thermoregulation (cooling/heating) done?
Thermoregulation (cooling or heating) is out of the GWP® panels, by circulating the culture with a pump through a plate heat exchanger.
Is it feasible to cultivate fragile algae strains or could the installed circulation pump damage them?
GWP® can be provided with different kinds of pumps, according to client’s specifications. A diaphragm membrane pump is installed as standard, ensuring no damages to fragile strains.
What about the operational costs?
These depend on reactor size. For the GWP®-II.250 (9000 L), 87 kWh/day of e.energy. Another important cost is CO
. GWP®s have an up-take efficiency of about 35-50%, this means that 6.6-4 kg CO
/kg dry biomass produced are needed.
Can panels be inclined?
The GWP®-III is provided with an automatic tilting system allowing to the user to decide the desired inclination in the range +50°/+140° (respect to the vertical). In the GWP®-II, commonly used for commercial installation, panels are instead installed vertically (90°) and 0.7 m spaced.
Which strains can be cultivated in the GWP® reactors?
The GWP® reactors are suitable for almost all type of strains. GWPs® have been successfully used to cultivate both marine and freshwater algae: Nannochloropsis, Tetraselmis, Phaeodactylum, Arthrospira (spirulina), Porphyridium, Cylindrotheca, Chlorella, Botryococcus and many others.