Effects of Exposure Time of Sonication on Physical Dispersal of Mucilage: a Preliminary Study

Kuşku H.

Journal of Engineering Technology and Applied Sciences, vol.7, no.1, pp.31-44, 2022 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)


In recent years, severe mucilage formation threatening nearshore marine ecosystems has intensified investigations on possible separation of components forming mucilage flocculation, deactivating bacteria adhesion and decomposing the colloidal structure. Challenges to eliminating mucilage formation in marine ecosystems require long-term measures, however quick reaction with environment-friendly approach is of great importance for the control of mucilage expansion since the impact of mucilage can be significantly hazardous in nearshore marine areas during seasonal change and may spread to more expansive areas when disregarded. In the present study, ultrasonic vibration at 40 kHz frequency generated by sonication showed a time-dependent destructive effect on the colloidal structure of mucilage. Results showed that an ultrasound wave with 40 kHz frequency for 60 minutes of application could be effective for nearly 50% dispersal of mucilage aggregation on sea surface that in terms might be a useful tool for rapid response in an Emergency Action Plans. However, further research is encouraged for understanding how sonication mitigates the aggregation of phytoplankton and bacteria forming the complex matrix of polymeric mucilage structure.