Our unique aquaculture experience translated
into home aquarist´s products.

Our products are formulated by marine biologists
and inspired in nature.

No additives. No preservatives.

Phytoplankton (also called microalgae) grows naturally on the ocean. At Necton’s, we just mimic Nature’s way, using modern biotechnologies to grow our own phytoplankton.

Microalgae seed, also called inoculum, when first arrives at our facilities from an official Culture Collection is just a small test tube with a very low cell density that needs to be scaled-up. Microalgae cultivation implies a succession of dilution and concentration processes, through culture scale-up. Scale-up is the term used to describe the process in which we increase microalgal culture’s volumes and their cell densities up to thousands of liters.

Scale-up process always starts up in our lab. When inoculum arrives, our lab technician checks its quality. After clearance, scale-up is ready to begin. Under aseptic conditions, inoculum is divided in sterile flasks, culture media and water are added. Water used in our process is treated with mechanical (ultra-filtration) and chemical procedures to guarantee total absence of bacterial and protozoan growth.

Process of scale-up consists on slow dynamics as microalgae are slow growers, and tend to take a while until adapting. From small test tube up to 1L flasks takes, at least, 3 months.

Indoor Lab

Once we have cultures in 1L flasks, we still need some more time to grow cultures indoor. Lab scale-up is done carefully under aseptic conditions. At least once a week, our lab technician checks all inoculum under the microscope, checking quality and nutrient levels of all flasks. A good quality of inocula is accomplished in our laboratory under controlled conditions, to avoid contaminations and optimize biochemical composition of microalgae. After 2 months, 200 L of culture are obtained, enough volume to seed the photobioreactors placed outdoor.

Outdoor scale-up

After more than two decades of microalgae cultivation, several technologies were installed and operated in our site, such as raceways, closed photobioreactors (PBRs), and even Greenwalls (GW). Necton is perhaps the only company in the world that has tested so many different technologies. Once cultures are growing outside, we operate our systems under a semi-continuous regime with an “online set-point” of pH and temperature control, which regulates carbon dioxide supply and cooling. Automated control allows the maintenance of excellent growing conditions according to the different microalgae species. Microalgal cultures are controlled daily for nutrients, growth parameters, contaminations and biochemical quality.

When cultures have high cell density, we start harvesting microalgal biomass. Biomass is harvested daily through a controlled centrifugation process. We do not use any flocculants or other chemicals while harvesting. After microalgae biomass is attained, it goes through quality assessment, to ensure its quality and, later, biomass is subjected to freeze-drying process, and product is ready to be packed and sent to you!

Powdered microalgae