ASU-led national algae testbed opens enrollment for fall workshop

September 4, 2013

Participants are invited to scale up their knowledge of algae growth and management Nov. 4-8 at the Algae Testbed Public-Private-Partnership (ATP3) fall workshop on Large-Scale Algal Cultivation, Harvesting and Downstream Processing. The weeklong workshop will take place at the Arizona Center for Algae Technology and Innovation, the leading ATP3 testbed site at the ASU Polytechnic campus. To sign up for the workshop, visit

The workshop will cover the practical applications of growing and managing microalgal cultures at production scale, including: Dr. Sommerfeld inspects red algae with bystander at the Polytechnic campus Download Full Image

• methods for handling cultures
• screening strains for desirable characteristics
• identifying and mitigating
• scaling up cultures for outdoor growth
• harvesting and processing technologies
• analysis of lipids, proteins and carbohydrates 

Related laboratory and field training will include numerous hands-on opportunities for participants to collect and perform routine sample measurements, monitor cultures for contaminants and evaluate the chemical composition of algal biomass.

This workshop is ideal for those interested in obtaining a broad overview of the management of microalgal cultures at scale, and for advanced students and trainees interested in the practical applications of microalgae. Participants are encouraged to ask questions, share information and network. Printed and electronic materials will be included and a certificate of completion will be provided at the conclusion of the workshop. Workshop enrollment is limited to 15 participants and will be filled on a first-come basis. Be sure to sign up at

ATP3 serves as a learning environment for the next generation of scientists, engineers and business leaders to help accelerate the research and development of algae-based technologies. The ATP3 open test bed and evaluation facilities are a hub for research and commercialization of algae-based biofuels and other biomass co-products.

ATP3 is a network of 12 agencies, which range from private industries to educational institutions and national labs, funded through a $15 million grant from the US Department of Energy. To learn more, visit

New monitoring device to protect workers in hazardous conditions

September 4, 2013

Jeffrey La Belle’s Biosensor Lab at Arizona State University is leading research behind development of a health and environmental monitoring device designed for emergency first-responders and people who work in places with hazardous substances and materials.

La Belle is an assistant professor in the School of Biological and Health System’s Engineering in ASU's Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. La Belle ExposureTrack device Download Full Image

In collaboration with InXsol, a Phoenix-based e-learning and simulation development company, La Belle is working on the product called ExposureTrack.

Using technology similar to a smartphone, the device will provide information about workers’ level of exposure to materials that could pose health and safety risks.

The venture has recently been awarded Phase 1 funding through the Small Business Innovation Research program of the National Institute of Environmental Heath Sciences.

According to an InXsol news release, ExposureTrack will provide “data fusion and visualizations of an exposure activity stream transcript, which includes environmental and health surveillance data.”

In the second phase of the product’s development, La Belle and the company will complete design and begin manufacture of the portable, wearable device, and then launch commercialization efforts.

Joe Kullman

Science writer, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering