After a 2-year absence, the Royal Welsh Show came back with a sizzle last month taking place during the hottest days ever recorded in Wales! Our project team was delighted to showcase Brainwaves on the 18th & 19th July with a stand outside the Aberystwyth University Education Pavilion.Read more
Postdoctoral Researcher post Circular Economy, TUD, Dublin
The Postdoctoral Researcher will be based at the Faculty of Business at TU Dublin, and report to Dr Anushree Priyadarshini and Dr Paul Hynds. The Postdoctoral Researcher will closely liaise with the project partners, co-PIs Prof Marcel Jansen (UCC), and Dr Gaurav Rajauria (MTU) and a project Research Assistant (UCC).
Research Assistant post Circular Economy UCC, Cork
This Research Assistant post is a key appointment in the FORWARD project, that brings together researchers from Technological University Dublin (TUD), Munster Technological University (MTU), and University College Cork (UCC). The central objective of FORWARD is to develop a “waste-to-value” bioeconomy by assessing, quantifying and developing a circular bioeconomy approach to food waste. The primary purpose of the research role is to design a roadmap for the waste management industry and policymakers for converting household food waste into sustainable biobased products using the cascading approach of a biorefinery. The roadmap will provide a framework for making the transition from food waste to food resource by exploring the literature, and other knowledge sources, for established and emerging technologies for bioconversion and valorisation of food waste. Specifically, the RA will review international knowledge re the biochemical profile of food waste, explore scope for a biorefinery approach to extract high value compounds from waste, explore scope for production of high value synthons from food waste using bacterial, fungal or yeast systems, assess the energy value of food waste, and the scope for mineral recovery using primary producers.
The Research Assistant will be based at the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences at UCC, and report to Prof Marcel Jansen. The Research Assistant will closely liaise with the overall project coordinator, Dr Anushree Priyadarshini (TUD), co-PI Dr Gaurav Rajauria (MTU) and a project postdoctoral researcher (TUD).
More details on the Research Assistant post are available to download here
Informal enquiries can be made in confidence to Prof Marcel AK Jansen, School of BEES, Email: email@example.com
17 Jun 2022
After a 2 year absence, the Cork Carnival of Science came back with a bang this month. Our project team was delighted to showcase Brainwaves at the science-filled spectacular, held at Fitzgerald’s Park on June 11th and 12th.
Organised by Old Cork Waterworks Experience with support from Cork City Council and SFI, the free, weekend long event showcased the wonders of science for all ages. We joined a jam-packed lineup that featured live demonstrations, hands on workshops and interactive experiments.
Thanks to everyone who stopped by to chat to our research team, discover our tabletop flow through system in action, watch our video and share their own insight and perspectives with us. We were particularly thrilled to see over 54 new people sign up to our project newsletter. Who knew one little plant could be so interesting!Read more
19 Jul 2022
Ms Marion Blanchard, a French Masters student from Toulouse in Southwest France recently spent some time volunteering on the Brainwaves Project. Sounds like she really enjoyed the experience gained and the Irish culture.
We tested our interview skills on Marion and asked her about her time spent in Ireland.
23 May 2022
Brainwaves project Principal Investigator Professor Marcel Jansen took to the airwaves for popular RTÉ Radio 1 wildlife and nature show Mooney Goes Wild. Appearing alongside UCC President Professor John O'Halloran, the segment highlighted the groundbreaking work on climate change, biodiversity loss and the circular economy being done in University College Cork.
Professor Jansen focused on the important work being done by the Brainwaves team in developing an innovative method of phytoremediation – cleaning agricultural wastewater using native duckweed plants. He explained the application of duckweed-based systems in on-farm settings, the research challenges being tackled to optimise these systems for large scale commerical use, and the economic benefits for farmers, including the creation of a high-protein feed source using duckweed biomass.
The segment aired live on April 11th, but you can listen back here at 43 minutes in.
10 May 2022
To mark Europe Day 2022, Brainwaves joined a public showcase of EU-funded projects held at Wexford County Council offices on May 9th.
Nearly a dozen projects across the south and east regions of Ireland attended on the day, highlighting the extent of the exciting EU-funded work happening across a diverse array of sectors including tourism, technology and climate change.
Across the Irish Sea in Wales, the research team enjoyed an outdoor picnic with other EU-funded projects at Aberystwyth University.
Below: The Welsh team enjoying a well-earned break in the fresh air on Europe Day
13 Apr 2022
For the past year, Abby Campbell and Kirsty Allwood have been working within the BRAINWAVES research group based in Aberystwyth University as a part of the year in industry degree scheme.
Both of them have a keen interest in botany and sustainable agriculture, and so were both eager to join the ongoing research in duckweed and its potential to remediate against agricultural waste.
Post lockdowns they were very excited to get as much laboratory experience as possible.
22 Mar 2022
UCC researchers on the EU-funded Brainwaves Project have developed an innovative, sustainable method of wastewater remediation – all with the help of a common native Irish plant.
11 Feb 2022
28 Jan 2022
Newly published paper from Brainwaves’ researchers highlights the challenges and opportunities for large-scale indoor Lemnaceae growth
Nothing beats duckweed (Lemnaceae) when it comes to fast growth! These amazing plants can double in biomass in just over a day. However, these plants don’t just grow fast, they are also highly nutritious, and can be used in animal feed or as human food. By culturing these plants indoors, a steady stream of fresh produce can be generated, irrespective of seasons.Read more
17 Dec 2021
Mount Lucas farm near Daingean in Co. Offaly is a rather unique place. Apart from its dramatic setting on several acres of windswept blanket bog, it is also home to an exciting circular economy project. Through the AquaMona project, former Bord na Móna peatlands have been transformed into Ireland’s only large-scale commercial duckweed-based fish farm.Read more
18 Nov 2021
Brainwaves Co-PI Dr Dylan Gwynn Jones was a member of an expert panel on ‘The Science of Climate Change’ held during a one-day AberClimate Symposium “Loss, Damage, Renewal” on the 18th October. The symposium was part of a special week-long festival showcasing the breadth of Aberystwyth University’s research, which focussed on key questions and potential solutions to the global climate and ecological crisis http://aber.ac.uk/researchfestRead more
25 Oct 2021
The National Dairy Show is Ireland’s premier indoor agricultural event; the place where dairy farmers and dairy industries do meet. This year’s meeting took place in the evening of October 20th and 21st, 2021, and was organised as a virtual event, as a result on the ongoing Covid19 crisis.
The on-line event covered a full range of topics relevant for the dairy industry, covering everything from innovation and machinery, to cattle breeding, sward-care, animal welfare and finance. Two critical areas for discussion related to the relationship between dairy farming and the environment. Discussions emphasised the complex relationship between climate change and dairy farming, and between slurry and the environment.Read more
27 Sep 2021
Lotti joined the Brainwaves team at Aberystwyth University as a technician for the summer of 2021 to assist with the outdoor duckweed systems. We bid her a fond farewell and wish her the best of luck with the rest of her studies in the BSc in Plant Biology course at Aberystwyth University.
Lotti left us with a short inspirational overview as to why she had to know more about the humble duckweed.Read more
18 Sep 2021
Thanks to all who came by to visit our outdoor stand at Culture Night at the Old Cork Waterworks Experience and chatted to our research scientists. Great engagement and interest in the project on a fine sunny September evening!
10 Aug 2021
Some fine poets have graced the shores of Ireland and here on the Brainwaves Project we are excited about this poem on Duckweed by our PI Professor Marcel Jansen.
Reflecting on his experience of working with this miracle plant Duckweed (Lemna minor) over the course of his career, he has created a wonderful short poem on the benefits of the humble duckweed plant.
14 Jul 2021
A 3rd year AU Plant Biology student Lotti did work on duckweed growth during her year in industry and is joining the AU team as a technician for the summer.
Lotti grew up in West Sussex and started her BSc in Plant Biology at Aberystwyth University in September 2018. Her interest in plants grew when she joined her local Young Farmers club in 2016 and from there she increasingly felt that it was her mission to highlight the importance of plants to mitigate global climate change impacts. Having completed her year in industry at Aberystwyth University assisting on the Brainwaves project she now joins for the summer as a technician. She hopes to continue onto a research masters in Controlled Environment Agriculture after finishing her BSc in 2022.Read more
07 Jul 2021
As part of our work on Brainwaves we will be using polytunnels to develop an affordable system for growing duckweed. The use of polytunnels will extend the growing season, optimising biomass production and maximising the water remediation capacity. Recently re-covered, our polytunnel at Aberystwyth University, is now ready for our first prototype system to be installed and tested.Read more
07 Jun 2021
We were delighted to welcome Professor Ed Byrne, the Chair Professor of Process & Chemical Engineering to our lab in BEES recently! Ed advised our team on system flow rates and experimental design for our duckweed tank.Read more
01 Jun 2021
05 May 2021