Crude oil sludge samples were obtained from storage tanks and microbial analysis was carried out to isolate, identify and characterize the possible crude oil utilizing microorganisms. The experiment was carried out with a view to determine the oxygen utilization, time required and the corresponding antithesis of minimizing or maximizing cost to obtain the optimum microbial growth potential in biodegradation process. An optimization model was developed based on linear programming which is an analytical technique used to determine the optimum solution to a decision problem. Test organisms were introduced into the sludge samples and left for different time intervals with equal volume of oxygen introduced into the system. The result obtained from the microbial analysis, oxygen utilization and time required revealed that the volume of oxygen used up by microorganisms were Desuforibrio (17.8cm3) > Gallionella (17.4cm3) > Thiobacillus (14.3cm3) > Desulfobacteria (13.1cm3) > Bacillus subtitis (10.3cm3). The optimum growth rate for the different species of the microorganisms was 1 day (Bacillus Subtitis), 3 days (Desuforbrio and Desulfobacteria) and 4 days (Gallionella and Thiobacillus). The data obtained from the experimental set up were used in the determination of cost and objective function.
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