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Buzz off! An evaluation of ultrasonic acoustic vibration for the disruption of marine micro-organisms on sensor-housing materials

McQuillan, J.S.; Hopper, D.J.; Magiopoulos, I.; Arundell, M.; Brown, R.; Shorter, S.; Mowlem, M.C.; Pascal, R.W.; Connelly, D.. 2016 Buzz off! An evaluation of ultrasonic acoustic vibration for the disruption of marine micro-organisms on sensor-housing materials. Letters in Applied Microbiology, 63 (6). 393-399. 10.1111/lam.12671

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© Publisher 2016 This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Mcquillan, J.S., Hopper, D.J., Magiopoulos, I., Arundell, M., Brown, R., Shorter, S., Mowlem, M.C., Pascal, R.W. and Connelly, D. (2016) Buzz off! An evaluation of ultrasonic acoustic vibration for the disruption of marine micro-organisms on sensor-housing materials. Letters in Applied Microbiology, which will be published in final form at doi:10.1111/lam.12671. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.
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Abstract/Summary

Biofouling is a process of ecological succession which begins with the attachment and colonization of micro-organisms to a submerged surface. For marine sensors and their housings, biofouling can be one of the principle limitations to long-term deployment and reliability. Conventional antibiofouling strategies using biocides can be hazardous to the environment, and therefore alternative chemical-free methods are preferred. In this study, custom-made testing assemblies were used to evaluate ultrasonic vibration as an antibiofouling process for marine sensor-housing materials over a 28-day time course. Microbial biofouling was measured based on (i) surface coverage, using fluorescence microscopy and (ii) bacterial 16S rDNA gene copies, using Quantitative polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Ultrasonic vibrations (20 KHz, 200 ms pulses at 2-s intervals; total power 16·08 W) significantly reduced the surface coverage on two plastics, poly(methyl methacrylate) and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) for up to 28 days. Bacterial gene copy number was similarly reduced, but the results were only statistically significant for PVC, which displayed the greatest overall resistance to biofouling, regardless of whether ultrasonic vibration was applied. Copper sheet, which has intrinsic biocidal properties was resistant to biofouling during the early stages of the experiment, but inhibited measurements made by PCR and generated inconsistent results later on.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1111/lam.12671
ISSN: 02668254
Additional Keywords: antifouling; biofouling; propidium monoazide; sensor; ultrasonic
Date made live: 10 Nov 2016 10:49 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/515098

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