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Augmenting Protocols for In-situ Separation of Biocompounds.

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In our modern world the source of for many chemicals is to acquire and refine oil. This process is becoming an expensive to the environment and to human health. Alternative processes for acquiring the final product have been developed but

In our modern world the source of for many chemicals is to acquire and refine oil. This process is becoming an expensive to the environment and to human health. Alternative processes for acquiring the final product have been developed but still need work. One product that is valuable is butanol. The normal process for butanol production is very intensive but there is a method to produce butanol from bacteria. This process is better because it is more environmentally safe than using oil. One problem however is that when the bacteria produce too much butanol it reaches the toxicity limit and stops the production of butanol. In order to keep butanol from reaching the toxicity limit an adsorbent is used to remove the butanol without harming the bacteria. The adsorbent is a mesoporous carbon powder that allows the butanol to be adsorbed on it. This thesis explores different designs for a magnetic separation process to extract the carbon powder from the culture.

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2015-05

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Controlling Light Intensity in Outdoor Photobioreactors

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This thesis focused on the development of a system that can sense light intensity and then control a smart film to provide the optimal light intensity for cyanobacteria. The overarching goal of this project is to further the study of

This thesis focused on the development of a system that can sense light intensity and then control a smart film to provide the optimal light intensity for cyanobacteria. The overarching goal of this project is to further the study of biofuels as an alternative energy source by increasing growth rates. If more algae or cyanobacteria can be grown per day, then the cost to produce the biofuel will decrease. To achieve this goal, PDLC (polymer dispersed liquid crystal) film was selected to be controlled due to its unique properties. It can be controlled with electricity and has variable states, in other words, not restricted to simply on or off. It also blocks 80% ultraviolet light and reduces thermal heat gain by 40% which is an important consideration for outdoor growing situations. To control the film, a simple control system was created using an Arduino Uno, SainSmart 8 channel relay board, an inverter, and a power supply. A relay board was utilized to manage the 40 volts required by the PDLC film and protected the electronics on the Arduino Uno. To sense the light intensity, the Arduino Uno was connected to a photoresistor, which changes resistance with light intensity. A 15 day test of two flasks of Cyanobacteria Synechocycstis sp. 6803, one shaded by the PDLC film, and the other unshaded, yielded 65% difference in optical densities. Overall, the experiment showed promise for controlling light intensity for photobioreactors. Ideally, this research will help to optimize light intensities when growing cyanobacteria or algae outdoors or it will help to discover what an ideal light intensity is by allowing a researcher unprecedented control.

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2015-05

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Engineering High Yield Production of L-Serine in Cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002

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Cyanobacteria have the potential to efficiently produce L-serine, an industrially important amino acid, directly from CO2 and sunlight, which is a more sustainable and inexpensive source of energy as compared to current methods. The research aims to engineer a strain

Cyanobacteria have the potential to efficiently produce L-serine, an industrially important amino acid, directly from CO2 and sunlight, which is a more sustainable and inexpensive source of energy as compared to current methods. The research aims to engineer a strain of Cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 that increases L-serine production by mutating regulatory mechanisms that natively inhibit its production and encoding an exporter. While an excess of L-serine was not found in the supernatant of the cell cultures, with further fine tuning of the metabolic pathway and culture conditions, high titers of L-serine can be found. With the base strain engineered, the work can be extended and optimized by deleting degradation pathways, tuning gene expression levels, optimizing growth conditions, and investigating the effects of nitrogen supplementation for the strain.

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Date Created
2020-05

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Developing an Automated Sampling System for CO2 Fixation in Cultures of Bio-Engineering Cyanobacteria

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Measuring changes in concentration within a dynamic system can be accomplished with a simple Arduino powered system. Currently, the system is utilized in cyanobacteria CO2 fixation experiments, where the fixation rates of multiple cultures can be measured simultaneously. The system

Measuring changes in concentration within a dynamic system can be accomplished with a simple Arduino powered system. Currently, the system is utilized in cyanobacteria CO2 fixation experiments, where the fixation rates of multiple cultures can be measured simultaneously. The system employs solenoids in parallel and can be applied for n number of outlet streams, all are connected to one large manifold which feeds to a CO2 concentration probe. In the future, the system can be modified to fit other simple dynamic gas systems.

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Date Created
2021-12