viernes, 13 de septiembre de 2013

Marin Sawa: Algaerium Bioprinter prints healthy food in your home

ORIGINAL: This Is AliveMarin Sawa

Marin Sawa
The Algaerium Bioprinter’ prototype demonstrates how microalgae can be cultivated in our domestic space to provide digitally printed health food on demand. This project refers to my previous work, which explored the aesthetic and functions of microalgae living systems. Here, Algaerium acts as an ink reservoir, containing ‘superfood’ microalgae such as Chlorella, Spirulina and Haematococcus. The selection of the algae strains reflects the diversity of colours in algae and allows for colourful printed patterns. Often algaes’ colours also indicate their nutraceutical values. For instance, Chlorella is exploited as health food for its high content of chlorophylls, responsible for its green pigmentation. Such species are cultivated on industrial scale and are increasingly in demand in today’s global health food market.

The Bioprinter envisions an immediate future in which algae ‘farming’ forms a new part of urban agriculture to reinforce food safety in our cities.

My project aims at adapting this industrial-scale production to a domestic technology. For this, I have been working in collaboration with Imperial College London to develop a new inkjet printing technology suitable for algae printing. By introducing living microalgae to food printing, we have invented a new way of consuming health food supplements. At micro scale, the Bioprinter technology provides a process in which cells can be ruptured and their nutrients can be readily absorbed. At macro scale, the Bioprinter envisions an immediate future in which algae ‘farming’ forms a new part of urban agriculture to reinforce food safety in our cities. We are also currently developing the technology to print algal-based energy devices as well as filtering devices. This research is part of my doctoral research at Central Saint Martins College of Arts and Design in London in collaboration with Imperial College London.

Marin Sawa
Marin Sawa
Marin is a designer and PhD researcher, practising at the intersection of textile and architectural design with biotechnology. She is particularly interested in the synthesis of art, science and technology in the context of design and sustainability.

She previously studied at the Architectural Association for her BA (Hons), Architecture and RIBA part1. She spent several years in Tokyo working for various architects firms and charismatic designers, including Taisuke Higuchi (Mackintosh/Globe Trotter Marunouchi), the renowned architects office, Kengo Kuma and Associates (Tokyo Agricultural University Museum, Designers Mansions 'Ajito', exhibition designs, the web design for the Kengo Kuma office), which led her to explore her passion for material structures culminating in a master's degree at Central Saint Martins entitled Design For Textile Futures, from which she has graduated with distinction.

Recent awards include the 2012 UAL International Graduate Scholarship, for funding her research degree at CSM, and 2012 Color in Design Award sponsored by Pantone.

Currently, as of the duration of her PhD (2011/12-2015), she is the Artist in Residence at Biochemistry Dep. (The Nixon Group), Sir Ernst Chain Building – Wolfson Laboratories, Imperial College London. This unique collaboration has been forged through the Energy Futures Lab, Imperial College, based on the commonality, algae, between her best-known work, Algaerium and their algal research: she continues to explore an intersection of design and algal biotechnology for an urban environment.

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