Raceway ponds with paddlewheels are widely used in mass algae cultivation. Algae sedimentation in the long straight part of the pond is a challenge due to poor vertical mixing of water flow in this section. In order to enhance vertical mixing, a novel algae pond with serpentine path was proposed previously as an alternative design to the paddlewheel raceways. However, the water mixing characteristics in the novel pond have not been thoroughly investigated and need to be quantitatively evaluated. Moreover, the important key design parameters including the dam number, dam length, and baffles should be optimized to enhance vertical water mixing and reduce dead zone area. The present study developed a 3D numerical model of water flow in the pond and studied the effects of dam number and dam length on the dead zone area, retention time and light/dark cycles.
Keywords algae pond, mixing, dead zone area, retention time, light/dark cycle, biofuel