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Influence of surface roughness on initial formation of biofilm

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Yasmine Ammar, Dr David Swailes, Professor Ben BridgensORCiD


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Surface roughness is an important factor affecting cellular attachment to surfaces prior to biofilm formation. The presence of nanoscale asperities reduces the physicochemical potential barrier encountered by a bacterial cell when it approaches the surface. This work studies the initial bacterial deposition prior to biofilm formation for wastewater treatment. The objective of this work is to model how surface roughness of the substrate and appendages of the bacterial would affect bacterial adhesion. In this study, bacteria are treated as inert particles that attach to surfaces according to the extended Derjaguin-Landau-Verwey-Overbeek (DLVO) theory. The surface roughness is modelled by reconstructing the surface topography using statistical parameters derived from Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) roughness analyses. The model is validated by comparing deposition measured in a parallel flow chamber to the Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) results for different ionic strengths and compared with a simple roughness model. It was also validated against the experimental data. Based on CFD simulations, the relationship between the deposition rate and the nanoscale surface roughness has been established. This will be very useful to guide the surface design for the materials surface of the bed in wastewater treatment.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Ammar Y, Swailes DC, Bridgens BN, Chen J

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: 42nd International Conference on Metallurgical Coatings and Thin Films

Year of Conference: 2015

Print publication date: 20/04/2015

Acceptance date: 01/01/1900