RSF Project


Optical methods for monitoring the growth of the diatom algae and their activity in the carbon dioxide capturing

Gorin Dmitry A., Korsunsky Alexander M., German Sergei V., Luchkin Sergey Yu., Bedoshvili Yekaterina D., Davidovich Nickolai A., Zakharova Yulia R., Cvjetinovic Julijana, Perkov Sergei A., Bairamova Elvira M.

To overcome the challenges of the project, existing methods and new ones are being developed for cultivating monocultures of pennate and marine centric diatoms in a specially designed facility, as well as monitoring the state of individual types of diatoms in control samples using spectrophotometry, optical and electron microscopy. In addition, the state of entire colonies is monitored using optoacoustic and fluorescent imaging, due to the presence of a large number of chromophores inside diatoms. Within the framework of the project, experiments are being carried out on the degree of carbon dioxide assimilation by cultivated diatoms in order to select the optimal concentrations of carbon dioxide to obtain a large amount of biomass and, accordingly, many valuable compounds. The purification process of organic components produces highly porous silica frustules that can be used in a variety of applications, including filter media, composites, MEMS microphones, etc.

According to the project timeline, a special room was fully equipped for diatoms cultivation. There were installed two fridges with red-blue illumination system, a PCR box, an autoclave, and an inverted fluorescent microscope.

Biological microscope NIB-FL
Inverted fluorescent microscope NIB-FL (LOMO-Microsystems, Saint Petersburg, Russia) designed for the study of samples in transmitted light in a light field, by the method of phase contrast and in the light of fluorescence when illuminated from below through the lens. The microscope is equipped with 10x/22 eyepieces and 4x, 10x, PH20x, 40x lenses, a trinocular visual nozzle, digital camera and fluorescent illuminator with two filter blocks:
- excitation at 460-490 nm, emission at 520-700 nm
- excitation at 520-580 nm, emission at 590-700 nm

Abacterial air box "Laminar-S"
Abacterial air environment box (Laminar Systems CJSC, Chelyabinsk Region, Russia) designed to work with cultures in sterile conditions and with DNA samples during PCR diagnostics. Provides protection of the workplace from the external environment. The box is equipped with a retractable ultraviolet irradiation of the working chamber, built-in bactericidal irradiator-recirculator, LED lighting of the working chamber.

Steam sterilizer GKa-25 PZ (07)
The sterilizer (Kasimov Instrument Plant, Ryazan region, Russia) is necessary for sterilization water saturated steam of chemical cookware and prepared nutrient medium for cultivation diatoms.

System for cultivation of diatoms
For cultivation of pennate diatoms in the required temperature, cultures were placed in a refrigerator with a set temperature of +11 degrees Celsius. The necessary lighting was provided by an LED strip with a blue-red radiation spectrum.