Microbial Analytics Sweden AB

Mölnlycke, Sweden

Microbial Analytics Sweden AB

Mölnlycke, Sweden
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Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: Fission-2008-5.1.1 | Award Amount: 1.71M | Year: 2009

The aim of this proposal is to enable present and future professionals on radioactive waste management in Europe, whatever their initial disciplinary background, to follow a training programme on geological disposal which would be widely recognized across Europe. This ambitious aim will only be achieved over a close collaboration between all stakeholders and through an effective and flexible use of academic and non-academic resources and competences. In addressing the needs of the end-users that will be identified through updating the CETRAD outcomes, access to a combination of education (formal), continuous learning and professional development (non-formal), and in-job learning (informal) will be offered and developed within the project. Under the FP6, PETRUS group has developed within the ENEN II project, a structure for addressing education. The new proposal seeks to extend the outcomes of the former study to the training activities that together with other measures like the establishment of an adequate quality assurance framework, will address the challenge of the non-formal sector. Besides, the project targets the development of a qualification framework (training passport) that is in the interest of different end-users and trainees. The qualification system should be transparent, based on the fair assessment of skills learned. The feasibility study on European recognition of non-formal learning through the comparison of different national recognition systems will allow proposing an adequate scheme applicable to competences in geological disposal. Finally, the project aims at networking all the training actors in order to form and foster the geological disposal training market. This will be achieved by developing Knowledge Management Strategy and implementing communication tools notably the face to face remote teaching infrastructure, which has been developed during the ENENII project.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: Fission-2007-1.1-01 | Award Amount: 6.20M | Year: 2008

Main objectives of ReCosy are the sound understanding of redox phenomena controlling the long-term release/retention of radionuclides in nuclear waste disposal and providing tools to apply the results to Performance Assessment/Safety Case. Although redox is not a new geochemical problem, different questions are still not resolved and thus raised by implementers and scientists. From a top-down approach, the reliability of redox measurements for site characterization, redox disturbances by the near-field materials, changes induced by glaciation scenarios or the redox buffer capacity of host-rocks and the kinetics of response to redox perturbations are addressed. From a bottom-up approach, questions concerning the interpretation of mixed potentials, surface mediated reactions, redox states of actinides and long-lived fission products, the source term of spent nuclear fuel in the presence of corroding steel as well as the role of microbes and biofilms on the evolution of the redox state are tackled. Radionuclide redox transformations on minerals are decisive scenarios in the NEA FEP list and in the RETROCK project. In the large FP 6 IPs NF-PRO and FUNMIG, redox phenomena controlling the retention of radionuclides were addressed, although not systematically considered. The ReCosy concept is innovative in the scientific approach to the redox phenomena, including i) advanced analytical tools, ii) investigations of processes responsible for redox control iii) required data on redox controlling processes, and iv) response to disturbances in disposal systems. To this aim, the scientific-technical work program is structured along six RTD workpackages, covering near-field and far-field aspects as well as all relevant host-rocks considered in Europe. The 28 partners of ReCosy include the key European Research Institutes and Universities from 12 European countries, and Russia.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: NFRP-06-2014 | Award Amount: 4.71M | Year: 2015

The multidisciplinary project will address key technical issues that must be tackled to support the implementation of planned geological disposal projects for higher-level radioactive wastes across the EU. Our current understanding of the impact of microbial metabolism on the safety of geological repositories remains tenuous, even though microorganisms may have controlling influences on wasteform evolution in situ, multibarrier integrity and ultimately radionuclide migration from the repository. This proposal targets a number of high urgency and high importance topics identified in the most recent IGD-TP Strategic Research Agenda, focusing specifically on the influence of microbial processes on waste forms and their behavior, and the technical feasibility and long-term performance of repository components. The project will bring together, for the first time, 15 European groups working on the impact of microbial processes on safety cases for geological repositories across the EU, focusing on key questions posed by waste management organisations. The emphasis will be on quantifying specific measureable impacts of microbial activity on safety cases under repository-relevant conditions, thus altering the current view of microbes in repositories and leading to significant refinements of safety case models currently being implemented to evaluate the long-term evolution of radwaste repositories. The integration of society and policy oriented studies in the project will also extend the impact of the project outside the scientific and technical domain, while a study of expert conceptualization, public perception and risk communication concerning microbial influences in geological disposal, will improve awareness of microbial issues on a broader level. The programme will help the EU claim international leadership in the understanding of the impact of microbial processes on geodisposal, and indeed other technological areas pertinent to the exploitation of the subsurface.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: Fission-2013-5.1.1 | Award Amount: 2.12M | Year: 2013

In line with the Lisbon strategy and 2020 perspective Petrus initiative coordinates since 2005 universities, WMOs, training organisations and research institutes efforts to develop cooperative approach to education and training (E&T) in the geological disposal with the purpose of expanding this cooperation under PETRUS3. PETRUS3 project aims at continuation of the European Cooperation in this area including: Practical implementation of PETRUS training programme following ECVET principles: Starting from the outcomes of the previous project, we will experiment the elaboration and the implementation of training modules defined in term of learning outcomes in a Competency-Based Curriculum. The objective is to set up accredited and recognised qualification in geological disposal that can be achieved in parallel both through formal and PD training programmes. Elaboration of multidisciplinary training and research framework for PhD student:The objectives are i) to fast-track the research activities in geological disposal by proposing customised training programmes, ii) to organize periodic PhD workshops and iii) to enhance the emergence of multidisciplinary research. Development of strategies and frameworks for maintaining PETRUS initiative over the long-term: Following the recommendations of the PETRUS End-users Council, the PETRUS3 project will establish strategic plan for sustainability of the PETRUS initiative through i) establishing a steering board for coordination and follow-up of the PETRUS educational programme, ii) collaboration with the IGD-TPs CMET Working Group iii) creation of an integration framework to the ENEN structure for the overall management of the radioactive waste disposal E&T activities under the association umbrella and iv) linking with the radiation protection platform EUTERP and related EFTS. PETRUS3 strives to continue PETRUS II and ECNET international cooperation by strengthening the links already established with China and IAEA


Pedersen K.,Gothenburg University | Pedersen K.,Microbial Analytics Sweden AB
Journal of Applied Microbiology | Year: 2010

Aims: To investigate the relationships between sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB), growth conditions, bentonite densities and copper sulfide generation under circumstances relevant to underground, high-level radioactive waste repositories. Methods and Results: Experiments took place 450 m underground, connected under in situ pressure to groundwater containing SRB. The microbial reduction of sulfate to sulfide and subsequent corrosion of copper test plates buried in compacted bentonite were analysed using radioactive sulfur ( 35SO42-) as tracer. Mass distribution of copper sulfide on the plates indicated a diffusive process. The relationship between average diffusion coefficients (Ds) and tested density (p) was linear. Ds (m2 s-1) = -0·004 × p (kg m-3) + 8·2, decreasing by 0·2 Ds units per 50 kg m-3 increase in density, from 1·2 × 10 -11 m2 s-1 at 1750 kg m-3 to 0·2 × 10-11 m2 s-1 at 2000 kg m-3. Conclusions: It is possible that sulfide corrosion of waste canisters in future radioactive waste repositories depends mainly on sulfide concentration at the boundary between groundwater and the buffer, which in turn depends on SRB growth conditions (e.g., sulfate accessibility, carbon availability and electron donors) and geochemical parameters (e.g., presence of ferrous iron, which immobilizes sulfide). Maintaining high bentonite density is also important in mitigating canister corrosion. Significance and Impact of the Study: The sulfide diffusion coefficients can be used in safety calculations regarding waste canister corrosion. The work supports findings that microbial activity in compacted bentonite will be restricted. The study emphasizes the importance of growth conditions for sulfate reduction at the groundwater boundary of the bentonite buffer and linked sulfide production. © 2009 The Society for Applied Microbiology.


Bengtsson A.,Microbial Analytics Sweden AB | Pedersen K.,Microbial Analytics Sweden AB
Applied Clay Science | Year: 2016

The Boom Clay formation in Mol, Belgium, is studied as a reference host rock for the future Belgian repository for high-level and long-lived radioactive wastes. An apparently dormant sulphate-reducing bacteria (SRB) population in Boom Clay can be activated during repository construction and reduce sulphate to sulphide which may enhance the corrosion of metallic components of the engineered barriers. Thirteen test cells constructed of titanium were installed with saturated Boom Clay cores at three different wet densities, 1800, 1900 and 2000 kg m− 3. For the purpose of analysing microbial sulphate-reduction to sulphide, a previously developed method utilizing the radiotracer 35SO4 2 − was applied. Copper discs were installed towards which produced sulphide diffused and reacted to form CuxS. The amounts of radioactive sulphide on the copper disc surfaces were analysed and the sulphide production rates in the clay were modelled using a diffusion coefficient for sulphate that was determined to 2.2 × 10− 12 m2 s− 1 for a fully saturated Boom Clay at a wet density of 2000 kg m− 3. The diffusion coefficient for sulphide was set to 4.4 × 10− 12 m2 s− 1. Heat treated clay (120 °C, 48 h) was included as negative controls in 4 test cells. The analysis for SRB reported from 107 up to 109 cells L− 1 pore water for 34 sample positions and 5 positions in the negative control clay cores were below detection limit. These numbers were within the range of cultivable bacteria observed previously in Boom Clay. There was no clear cut-off in density with respect to presence of cultivable SRB and sulphide production, but it appeared as if sulphide production was increasingly possible at or below 1800 kg m− 3. At higher densities, numbers were lower, but the SRB were still cultivable and active which suggests that SRB can be active and produce sulphide in a Boom Clay repository for as long as sulphate is available. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.


It was previously concluded that opposing gradients of sulphate and methane, observations of 16S ribosomal DNA sequences displaying great similarity to those of anaerobic methane-oxidizing Archaea and a peak in sulphide concentration in groundwater from a depth of 250-350 m in Olkiluoto, Finland, indicated proper conditions for methane oxidation with sulphate. In the present research, pressure-resistant, gas-tight circulating systems were constructed to enable the investigation of attached and unattached anaerobic microbial populations from a depth of 327 m in Olkiluoto under in situ pressure (2.4 MPa), diversity, dissolved gas and chemistry conditions. Three parallel flow cell cabinets were configured to allow observation of the influence on microbial metabolic activity of 11 mM methane, 11 mM methane plus 10 mM H 2 or 2.1 mM O 2 plus 7.9 mM N 2 (that is, air). The concentrations of these gases and of organic acids and carbon, sulphur chemistry, pH and E h, ATP, numbers of cultivable micro-organisms, and total numbers of cells and bacteriophages were subsequently recorded under batch conditions for 105 days. The system containing H 2 and methane displayed microbial reduction of 0.7 mM sulphate to sulphide, whereas the system containing only methane resulted in 0.2 mM reduced sulphate. The system containing added air became inhibited and displayed no signs of microbial activity. Added H 2 and methane induced increasing numbers of lysogenic bacteriophages per cell. It appears likely that a microbial anaerobic methane-oxidizing process coupled to acetate formation and sulphate reduction may be ongoing in aquifers at a depth of 250-350 m in Olkiluoto. © 2013 International Society for Microbial Ecology All rights reserved.


Pedersen K.,Microbial Analytics Sweden AB
FEMS Microbiology Ecology | Year: 2012

Deep Fennoscandian groundwater is anaerobic, reducing in character and populated by a large diversity of obligate and facultative anaerobic microorganisms. Concentrations of H2 and carbon monoxide are often 0.01-1 μM and of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and methane 0.01-1 mM. Microbial activity involving these electron and energy donors may help keep deep groundwater anaerobic and reduced. H2 was added in concentrations of 0.1-10 mM to a sulphate-reducing community attached to crushed rock in groundwater under a pressure of 2.0 MPa and in situ geochemical conditions. Experiments reported a threshold concentration of approximately 1 μM H2 at which sulphate reduction ceased, despite the presence of DOC and acetate, suggesting that H2 was needed for sulphate-reducing activity. δ13C values of acetate and DOC data suggested that organic material was degraded to acetate by means of a heterotrophic process. New pressure-resistant micro-sensors for measuring Eh indicated an H2-concentration-dependent decrease in Eh. The investigated community rapidly mitigated the increase in Eh caused by repeated additions of 0.1-0.2 mM pulses of O2 as long as H2 was available. The results imply that sulphate reduction to sulphide with H2 may dominate sulphate-rich groundwater, which may have implications for metallic underground constructions. © 2012 Federation of European Microbiological Societies.


Hallbeck L.,Microbial Analytics Sweden AB | Pedersen K.,Microbial Analytics Sweden AB
FEMS Microbiology Ecology | Year: 2012

Site selection for a spent nuclear fuel (SNF) repository required analysis of microbial abundance and diversity at two Swedish sites, Forsmark and Laxemar-Simpevarp. Information about sulphate-reducing bacteria (SRB) was required, as sulphide could corrode copper SNF canisters. Total number of cells (TNC) and ATP were analysed, and plate counts and most probable number (MPN) analyses were conducted using eight media based on different electron donors and acceptors for specific microorganism physiological groups. Groundwater chemical composition and Eh were analysed; sampling depths were 112-978 m below sea level. TNC was 5.5 × 103 to 4.7 × 105 cells mL-1, correlating with ATP concentrations. Culturability in TNC percentage was 0.01-35.9, averaging 5.12. Culturable numbers varied greatly between sample positions and uncorrelated with depth. SRB were found in 29 samples and were below detection in three; the MPN of SRB correlated negatively with Eh, as did the MPN of acetogens. Data indicated that microbial sulphate reduction was ongoing in many sampled aquifers; published stable isotope data and modelling results supported this observation. The sites did not differ significantly, but the large data range suggested that analysis of more samples would enable detailed evaluation of microbial processes and their relationship with geochemical information. © 2011 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.


Pressure-resistant circulating systems were constructed to enable the investigation of attached and unattached microbial populations under in situ pressure (2.5 MPa), diversity, dissolved gas and chemistry conditions. Three parallel flow cell cabinets were configured to allow observation of the effect on microbial metabolic activity of adding 3 mM hydrogen or 2.4 mM acetate, compared with an untreated control. Hydrogen addition reduced the generation time fourfold to 2 weeks, doubled the sulphide production rate and increased acetate production by approximately 50%. The acetate addition induced acetate consumption. The studied subterranean microbial processes appeared to proceed very slowly in terms of volume and time, although the results suggest that individual cells could be very active. Lytic bacteriophages are hypothesized to have caused this contradictive observation. Phages may consequently significantly reduce the rates of subterranean microbial processes. Furthermore, the results suggest that hydrogen from corroding underground constructions could induce significant local microbial activity and that the low concentrations of hydrogen often observed in pristine subterranean environments may support slow but sustainable microbial activity in deep groundwater. © 2012 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.

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