Dry Lab

In the dry lab, our engineers and oceanographers combine their skills to design and construct bioreactors. At the same time, a great effort is invested in the development of computer models to understand the myriad of complex processes determining the behavior of our biosystems.


The dry lab team has been working on different kind of models to predict the behavior and optimum settings for the biosystems we have been designing and working with.
Some basic modeling steps were to predict biologically reasonable bioluminescence, AHL and sugar yields for our transformed Synechococcus from a metabolic network algorithm.
The main modeling goal in this project is to modify and entwine 2 complex models in a synergic mathware for the integration of all relevant metabolic and molecular processes of the coculture. We combine a metabolic network of Synechococcus with a hybrid model of A. fischeri quorum sensing based on 9 highly non-linear differential equations. The aim of the model is to constrain the design possibilities for the advanced continuous coculture system into a set of input values which result in an optimum performance.
In order to restrict the optimum performance outputs, we applied conditionals for high luminescence values, stable day/night oscillation behaviors and balanced energy budget.
The result is a set of multivariate solutions for relative volumes and cell densities of each culture compartment that will assemble a functional bioreactor design.


As our economic budget was quite limited, we had to work hard to design and assemble our own bioreactors with basic laboratory material. We built different bioreactors for Synechococcus growth, together with a biphasic coculture prototype. We designed an advanced coculture bioreactor, capable of continuous culture and long term funnctioning. This design has an important electronic part, which is totally automatized by a small hardware and fed by a solar panel, conserving its autonomous nature.