Predicting DO Variations Caused by Algae

by Richard C. Bain, Jr.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Sanitary Engineering Division, 1968, Vol. 94, Issue 5, Pg. 867-882

Document Type: Journal Paper


Eutrophic environments are often dominated by planktonic algal populations (phytoplankton) which can cause diurnal variations in DO concentrations through respiratory activity and photosynthesis. Photo synthetic oxygenation and respiratory deoxygenation rates of estuarine phytoplankton were measured at various standing crop (chlorophyll) levels. Oxygen production and consumption rates for actively growing phytoplankton populations were related to standing crop at 20○C and non-limiting light. Variations in algal photo synthetic production rate, as related to light adaption, age of cells, nutrition, temperature and algal type, are considered. The Streeter-Phelps equation was modified to include phytoplankton production and respiration rates in formulations designed to predict DO concentrations over a 24-hr period. An example is given, and the resulting predictions are compared with field measurements from a tidal reach of the San Joaquin River, California.

Subject Headings: Vegetation | Oxygen | Crops | Eutrophication | Oxidation | Estuaries | Temperature effects | Highway and road design | California | United States

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