Spatially resolved quantification of metal ion concentration in a biofilm-mediated ion exchanger

DAG von der Schulenburg, DJ Holland, Marion Paterson-Beedle, Lynne Macaskie, LF Gladden, ML Johns

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Citations (Scopus)


A bioremediation process to remove Co2+ from aqueous solution is investigated in this study using a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) protocol to rapidly obtain multiple 2D spatially resolved Co2+ ion concentration maps. The MRI technique is described in detail and its ability to determine the evolution in both axial and radial concentration profiles demonstrated, from which total column capacity can be determined. The final ion exchange column design allows operation in the 'plug flow' regime, hence making use of its full capacity before breakthrough. Conventional techniques for such process optimization are either restricted to the analysis of the exchanger outlet, which provides no information on the spatial heterogeneity of the system, or are invasive and need a variety of sample points to obtain ID concentration information. To the best of our knowledge, our results represent the first concentration maps describing the bioremediation of metal ion contaminated water.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)821-829
Number of pages9
JournalBiotechnology and Bioengineering
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008


  • biofilm
  • ion exchanger
  • MRI
  • radioactivity
  • bioremediation


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