Investigation of microbial growth on surfaces: combating biofouling of sensors and environmental platforms

Project Description

Underwater instrumentation suffers biofouling and loss of performance when immersed in the sea for extended periods. This phenomenon results in poor data quality or a need for frequent maintenance. Biofouling is defined as the undesirable accumulation of micro-organisms, plants and animals on a surface. In this project we propose the study, development and characterisation of novel materials for prevention of fouling. We investigate materials because mechanical methods are not ideal for application in sensing where power use will be a limiting factor in deployment of devices for extended periods of time. Initial studies have illustrated that certain material components show inhibition of bacterial growth completely and others show a reduction in the growth of gram positive or gram negative bacteria.

Internal Collaborators

Fiona Regan, Tim Sullivan

Funding Body

Beaufort Marine Research Awards