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Biofilm Day 2016 – University of Hull

Posted: 07/07/2016 By: Estelle Morris

Bio-stabilisation of sediments is an important effect of biofilms influencing sediment dynamics in coastal and fluvial environments. Changes in environmental conditions due to climate change may impact the sediment stabilising capacity of biofilms and hence the development of channels and bars in a range of aquatic environments. A better understanding of biofilm behaviour in natural systems is needed to predict robustly how environmental change will affect bio-stabilisation in the future, and may have done in the (ancient) past.

A key question within the Hydralab+ project is how to best represent biofilm characteristics and behaviour. Flume experiments will allow us to quantify how long it takes for a biofilm to mature and, in turn, how this affects sediment stability. Experiments may also help to explore the differences in biofilm behaviour and characteristics for freshwater, brackish and saline environments. Importantly, systematic tests can be done to examine the resilience and recovery of biofilms following climate-change related stresses such as droughts (simulating longer periods of low flow), floods (simulating increased storminess and flood risk) and increased salinity (simulating sea-level rise).

The aim of the Biofilm day is to bring together scientists who are working on biofilms or have an interest in biofilms. Biofilm research is truly interdisciplinary with relevance for engineers, geologists and biologists to name a few.

Please follow this link to find a Storify summary of the Biofilm day 2016: https://storify.com/WietseLageweg/getting-started 

 

A big thanks to all contributors for this inspirational and slimy sticky day!

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