News

Need of amendment of our (legal) foundation to let ISMET going global!

Dear ISMET members,

I am writing to you in troubled times, but spring is coming. I hope that you and your families and loved ones as well as scientific families and partners are safe and healthy.
Although the last years and months may have brought us physically more apart, I am more confident than ever that the pursuit to happiness can only be based on global understanding and cooperation based on equality. Therefore, also ISMET has to become a true global society.

Here the both Ambassadors of ISMET communicated very clearly the priority of their communities that new Chapters are needed. Establishing these required changing the bylaws that are the legally binding document setting the foundation of ISMET.

On this pathway, the Board of Directors revised and updated our bylaws that you can see also here.

With accepting the bylaws the most important changes being:

  • ISMET will have five Chapters (A-Africa, AP-Asia Pacific, EU-Europe, LA-Latin America, NA-Northern America) instead of three Chapters that will send equal representatives to the Board of Directors
  • Two representatives per Chapter will be sent as the members to the Board of Directors that each serves for 4 years.
  • Elections will take place for all Chapters (at the same time) every 2 years, all members of ISMET will vote for one Chapter, only. Here a transition period will be in place, for which in 2022 no elections would take place.
  • The President stays outside of the regional representation and will be elected from the members of the Board of Directors, to serve 2 years as a President (meaning a maximum of 6 years in the Board) meaning the Board will have 10 members + 1 President
  • The ISMET committees will be re-structured, the website and newsletter committee will be merged into Public engagement and outreach Committee.
  • A code of conduct is introduced.
  • ISMET Fellows are introduced.

Further, the Board of Directors has decided, given that the new bylaws are approved, that until 2028 the global ISMET meeting would be every three years from now on to allow sufficient time for the meetings of the regional chapters to take place.

This is why we need you taking action now! Approve the new bylaws here (logged-in, paying subscribers only).

In case of questions or doubts, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me or any other member of the ISMET Board of Directors.

Yours,
Falk (Harnisch)
 – President of ISMET –

Public Engagement Day

Join the 1st International ISMET Public Engagement Day.

How? Submit your entry on the 20th June 2022 to participate to the contest! The top three entries will receive a prize that will be given during the global ISMET 8 conference held in 19-23rd September 2022 in Chania, Greece.

PhD or PostDoc position in the field of Microbial Fuel Cells for Wastewater Treatment aboard Ships

Description

The Research Group Environmental Process Engineering at the University of Bremen (Germany) seeks candidates for a PhD or PostDoc position (36 months) in the above field. Candidates should hold a PhD/Master’s degree (or equivalent) in

Chemical & Environmental Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Biotechnology (or related fields)

Aim of the project

We want to explore the suitability of microbial fuel cells for the sustainable and reliable treatment of wastewaters aboard pleasure crafts and seagoing vessels. Potential advantages over conventional approaches include reduced energy demand and sludge accumulation as well as improved elimination of nitrogen compounds that contribute to water eutrophication.

Your tasks

In close collaboration with project partners from industry you will be responsible for the design, construction, and characterization of a microbial fuel cell system for wastewater treatment aboard the historic sailing vessel “Grönland”. As the oldest seagoing ship in Germany still sailing today, the “Grönland” was the ship of the first German Polar Expedition in 1868.

Initially, the project tasks include the development of electrode materials, the construction of up-scaled test cells, and the evaluation of operating strategies. Later on, a 1 m³ microbial fuel cell prototype will be constructed and extensively characterized, also onboard the historic sailing vessel.

Your profile

We are looking for highly motivated individuals with excellent scientific record. Successful candidates must be good experimentators and possess strong communication skills. Ideally, the candidates are adept to scientific publication and have previous experience in the fields of bio-electrochemistry, process engineering, and wastewater treatment. Being enthusiastic about sail ships is a plus but not mandatory.

What we offer

The University of Bremen and its Center for Environmental Research and Sustainable Technology offer an excellent scientific environment for interdisciplinary research. The full-time position (salary level 100% E 13) is affiliated to the Research Group Environmental Process Engineering. Our interdisciplinary research is focused on fundamentals, materials, and processes for sustainable environmental engineering and biotechnology.

Institution contact information

For further inquiries and applications please contact:

Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Sven Kerzenmacher,
kerzenmacher@uni-bremen.de
http://www.uvt.uni-bremen.de

Contact email address

kerzenmacher@uni-bremen.de

Deadline

Open until filled

https://www.uni-bremen.de/uvt/stellenangebote/phd-or-postdoc-position-in-the-field-of-microbial-fuel-cells-for-wastewater-treatment-aboard-ships

WISMET seminar 10/12

Day: 10th December (8 am Pacific Standard Time, 5 pm Central Europe Time)

Speaker: Sara Tejedor Sanz

Affiliation: Senior Scientific Engineer Associate at the Advanced Biofuels Process Development Unit, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, USA

Title: Extracellular electron transfer in lactic acid bacteria: squeezing fermentation using electrodes as redox sink

Abstract: The strategy that microorganisms use to extract energy dictates their environmental niche and their interactions with other organisms. Recently, we identified a widespread electron transfer pathway in lactic acid bacteria that allows these microorganisms to reduce extracellular electron acceptors. These species play a major, beneficial role in food fermentation and maintenance of a healthy gut microbiome. The presence of this extracellular electron transfer pathway in lactic acid bacteria was extremely surprising because they are believed to have abandoned electron transfer chains and conserve energy almost exclusively via fermentation. Our research now shows that lactic acid bacteria induce extracellular electron transfer genes and use an anode as electron acceptor to conserve energy and accelerate fermentation under laboratory conditions. Thus, the use of extracellular electron transfer could give lactic acid bacteria a fitness advantage in outcompeting other microorganisms in an ecological context. Additionally, we have investigated whether this metabolism could provide a biotechnological application by changing the flavor and texture of fermented foods.

Registration link:https://forms.gle/fuJwBMmquDiUCt6m7

More information on WISMET seminars

Postdoc for sea bed methane cycling by reversible EET

Description

A new source of methane was recently discovered in a subsurface zone of the seabed, where the production and oxidation of methane occur concurrently. Preliminary work indicates that archaea and bacteria may here exchange electrons in the sediment through minerals that function as electrical conductors and capacitors. The working hypothesis is that the archaea are able to reverse the direction of their energy metabolism depending on whether they interact with electron accepting or electron donating bacteria. The specific objective is to unravel the processes using sensitive radiotracer experiments and to identify the microbial physiology of archaea involved in this cryptic methane cycling. The results will be of general importance for the understanding of methane biogeochemistry.

The project is a collaboration between the University of Southern Denmark and Aarhus University, funded by the Independent Research Fund Denmark. The successful candidate will join an interdisciplinary team covering molecular microbiology, electromicrobiology, microbial physiology and biogeochemistry. We seek a highly motivated candidate with an academic background and documented experience in aquatic microbiology and microbial process studies.

Institution contact information

Aarhus University, Denmark

Contact email address

nat-tech.hr.emply@au.dk

Deadline

01-10-2021

External link

https://international.au.dk/about/profile/vacant-positions/job/postdoctoral-position-on-seabed-methane-cycling-at-the-section-for-microbiology-at-aarhus-university-denmark

Postdoctoral position on electromicrobiological oxygen production in sediment

Description

Cable bacteria are filamentous microorganisms that transfer electrons across centimetre-scale distances, coupling distant oxidation and reduction reactions in aquatic sediment. Cable bacteria conserve energy by coupling the oxidation of hydrogen sulfide produced in deeper sediment layers to the reduction of oxygen diffusing into sediment from the overlying water. There is some evidence that under certain circumstances cable bacteria can reverse their oxygen reduction reaction in deep sediment, producing trace amounts of molecular oxygen from water. This oxygen then becomes available for respiration by aerobic bacteria in the surrounding sediment. This phenomenon has the potential to turn our concept of what “anoxic” sediment is upside-down. The successful candidate will investigate this process using a diverse suite of methods, including planar optodes, microsensors, stable isotope labeling, and metatranscriptomics.

This position is financed by the Villum Foundation. The successful candidate will work closely with researchers, technicians and students in the Center for Electromicrobiology (http://cem.au.dk), funded by the Danish National Research Foundation, to achieve the project goals. We seek a highly motivated candidate with a background in microbiology, microbial ecology, microbial biogeochemistry, environmental chemistry, environmental science, soil science, marine science, or other related fields.

Institution contact information

Aarhus University, Denmark

Contact email address

nat-tech.hr.emply@au.dk

Deadline

01-11-2021

External link

https://www.au.dk/om/stillinger/job/postdoctoral-position-on-electromicrobiological-oxygen-production-in-sediment/

NA-ISMET 2021 abstract submission

Dear colleagues,

We are pleased to announce that the North American Meeting of the International Society for Microbial Electrochemistry and Technology (NA-ISMET) will be hosted by the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, California on November 17-19, 2021. The meeting is supported by the United States Department of Energy, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Army Research Office, Office of Naval Research, and ISMET members. Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, we anticipate that registration fees will be kept to a minimum, particularly for students and other junior scientists who are ISMET members.

An informational flyer is attached. Abstracts are due July 15, 2021. Please visit the meeting website at naismet2021.usc.edu (the website will be updated with more details in the coming weeks). Please contact naismet2021@gmail.com with any questions.

The naismet2021 team

Bioelectrochemical Researcher

We are looking for a person with a master or doctorate in electrochemistry or material science, preferably with experience in bioelectrochemical systems and/or H2 electrolysers and fuels cells.

The researcher will complement the capabilities of the current team, increasing the quality of project execution. He/she will execute projects in BES technologies, carrying out the following tasks:

  • Electrochemical characterization of electrodes and membranes,
  • Design and assembly bioelectrochemical labscale reactors (MFC, MDC, MEC).
  • Upscaling activities
  • Operation, monitoring and (bio)electrochemical characterization of BES reactors.
  • Data analysis, development of scientific publications, and new project ideas.
  • Required qualifications:
  • Master and/or PhD in electrochemistry
  • Experience in Bioelectrochemistry and electrosynthesis or fuel cells
  • Experience on electrodes and/or membrane characterization
  • Immediate incorporation
  • Location: Terrassa (Spain)
  • Institution contact information: LETAT technological Center https://www.leitat.org/en/
  • Deadline: 25/06/2021
  • HR Contact: Gemma Escursell (seleccion@leitat.org )

More information at https://www.leitat.org/RRHH/LeitatJobs-INVESTIGADOR_BIOELECTROQUIM.html

HyBioSol PhD Studentship, School of Chemistry, NUI Galway

Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for a PhD studentship within the School of Chemistry/ChemLight group at the National University of Ireland, Galway. We are looking for a talented and highly motivated student with an interest in biotechnology, electrochemistry and photoelectocatalysis to develop a novel hybrid platform for solar energy-driven CO2 reduction to green chemicals. The position is available from 1st September 2021.

The Project:

The aim of the project is to develop and optimize a novel bio-photoelectrochemical technology, consisting of a gas diffusion biocathode and a photoanode divided by an ion exchange membrane, to convert CO2 to green fuels and chemicals using solar light as power source. The candidate will take over three-chamber hybrid cells already in operation in the lab, and will carry out, with the support of the team, a multidisciplinary approach to solve key bottlenecks including:

  • Improve CO2 capture and biological conversion to biofuels by using tailored gas diffusion cathodes, which will be modified in order to increase their specific surface;
  • Evaluate the use of highly conductive electrolytes to reduce energy losses of the cell, and assess their influence on bioelectrochemical CO2 conversion in terms of production rates, coulombic efficiency and microbial community composition and dynamics;
  • Participate in the development of a photoanode capable of delivering enough current density to drive the cathodic bioreaction with minimum external bias;
  • Operate the hybrid bioreactor equipped with the modified GDE cathode and the photoanode developed during the project.

Job Description:

The successful candidate will work under the supervision of Dr Pau Farràs (ORCID 0000-0003-3859- 2868) and Dr Paolo Dessì (ORCID 0000-0002-9935-3038) to develop a PhD project on the topic “Hybrid bio-solar cells for CO2 conversion to green chemicals”.

Duties:

  • Modify gas diffusion electrodes with carbon-based materials aiming to increase the surface area available for the attachment of microorganisms; characterize and test the developed electrodes in bioelectrochemical cells;
  • Investigate highly conductive electrolytes containing high concentration of Na, K, P and Mg salts to reduce the ohmic resistance of the cell while maintaining the activity of the microorganisms;
  • Participate with the research team on the development of photoanodes for water splitting and/or oxidation of organic pollutants;
  • Develop and operate hybrid cells equipped with the gas diffusion cathode and photoanode and evaluate its performance and energy savings in comparison to bioelectrochemical cells equipped with traditional anode materials;
  • Keep appropriate records as directed and in line with University policy;
  • Contribute to the research project’s dissemination in whatever form – report, papers, chapters, book;
  • Participate and contribute to weekly meeting with the research group, as well as individual meetings with the supervisory team.

Qualifications/Skills required:

The candidate must have a MSc degree or equivalent in Engineering, Biotechnology or related disciplines. He/she must be highly motivated to perform multidisciplinary research and demonstrate excellent written/oral English and team work skills. Previous experience with bioelectrochemical systems is highly appreciated.

Essential Requirements:

  • MSc degree in Engineering, Biotechnology or related disciplines;
  • Evidence of experience in bioreactor operation;
  • Excellent English speaking and writing abilities;
  • Evidence of team working skills;
  • Eligible for enrolment in the Structured PhD in Chemistry programme at NUI Galway.

Desirable Requirements:

  • Experience in bioelectrochemical systems and/or photocatalysis;
  • Experience in bioprocess design;
  • Ability to work in a focused and supportive team and the willingness to maintain the friendly and supportive atmosphere of the group.

Employment permit restrictions apply for this category of post Salary range: PhD stipend €18,500 per annum + Academic Fees Start date: Position is available from September 2021.

Continuing Professional Development/Training:

Researchers at NUI Galway are encouraged to avail of a range of training and development opportunities designed to support their personal career development plans.

Further information on research and working at NUI Galway is available on Research at NUI Galway

Further information about ChemLight group is available at www.nuigalway.ie/chemlight.

Informal enquiries concerning the post may be made to Doctor Pau FARRÀS e-mail pau.farras@nuigalway.ie

To Apply:

Applications to include a motivation letter, CV, BSc and/or MSc diploma and contact details for two referees should be sent, via e-mail (in word or PDF only) to Dr Pau Farràs (pau.farras@nuigalway.ie) and Dr Paolo Dessì (paolo.dessi@nuigalway.ie). Please put reference number HyBiosol-PhD- scholarship in subject line of e-mail application.

Closing date for receipt of applications is 5.00 pm on Monday 31st May 2021.

Interviews are planned to be held on week starting on 7th June 2021.

All positions are recruited in line with Open, Transparent, Merit (OTM) and Competency based recruitment

National University of Ireland, Galway is an equal opportunities employer.