A wall-mount phytoplankton grower with Arduino #Arduino #FromTheForums #Biology

On the Adafruit Forums, user hydrophyte shares a fascinating project:

This is a phytoplankton culture setup in a wall-mount clear plastic cylinder with additional brackets holding electronics enclosures + air pump. This kind of affordable small air pump tends to wear out fast, so it runs just one minute per hour: probably adequate for occasional stirring of this easy phytoplankton culture.

Phytoplankton is the extreme halophile, Dunaliella salina. In good growing conditions, D. salina can produces lots of beta carotene pigment and tint the salty water with a bright orange or red coloration. I have seen this same culture glow with an amber-orange hue, but tonight it’s just plain green.

This is a simple setup just with an RTC, 7-segment clock and relay. I didn’t really need all the pins for this one, but I like using the Metro Mini very much. It runs just like a regular Uno and never gives me any trouble.

really like that white 7-segment clock display. It looks cool.

The RGB LED strip behind the clear tube can shine with many different colors. The white 1W LED at the top renders better phytoplankton coloration in photos.

An advantage of keeping this particular phytoplankton in this kind of low-maintenance setup is that the hypersaline conditions (more then twice as salty as seawater!) will tend to exclude Bacteria and other Algae that could otherwise contaminate and foul the culture.

See more pictures in the post here.

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