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Eurener donates photovoltaic modules for drinking water treatment system | Europe

Eurener donates photovoltaic modules for drinking water treatment system

The Valencia-iGEM team, comprising scientists and students from the Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV), Catholic University of Valencia (UCV) and the University of Valencia (UV) of various degrees (Biology, Marine Sciences, Biotechnology, Industrial Engineering and Chemistry Engineering) and coordinated by the Interdisciplinary Modelling Group (InterTech) of the UPV and the Energesis Chair of the UCV have developed a biological system to disinfect contaminated water.

The system is framed in the specialty of synthetic biology, has biological parts that replace the electronic ones. The set needs 60 to 80 W of electrical power for operation obtained from solar photovoltaic modules donated by the company Eurener. It is able to eliminate certain pathogens such as listeria and salmonella, causing gastrointestinal disorders and thousands of deaths every year, thanks to genetic modification of E. coli bacteria to produce bacteriocins, which are specific proteins that destroy the pathogens and which do not affect other bacteria or humans.

The device consists of three main parts, one where bacteriocins are created, another one where you enter the water to disinfect and third that acts as switch for the whole process. Because its primary use is for economically depressed areas where electricity is hard to get, to facilitate its expansion and management it obtains power from a solar photovoltaic module, in this case is the Black Panel that Eurener has given free to the scientists team to support this project. Thus the device has sufficient autonomy to be installed anywhere and even be transported to different tanks and water sources within the same area helping more people.

The Spanish team has an extensive track record with other winning projects in different editions of the iGEM international contest organized by the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The objective of this event is to disseminate and promote synthetic biology among the younger members of the scientific community, a new area where biology creates unique and novel organisms with predetermined tasks.

Valencia-iGEM was the first Spanish team to participate in the competition, which has attended continuously since 2006. The Valencian group has achieved resounding success since its beginning, which highlights the third world place in 2009 and Gold Medal in 2010.

Moreover, the company has participated in two events organized recently by the UPV about solar energy. In the "IV Conference on renewable energy" has been part of the roundtable focused on the theme "Balancing cost of the solar photovoltaic energy" and the "I Conference on new roads: safe, intelligent and sustainable" where Eurener presented the paper "New technologies and road intelligence".
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Posted by Gloria Llopis | 2012-01-16