5.1 Practical Applications
Sea water is getting warmer day by day due to global warming and more corals are being wiped out at a horribly fast pace compared to the previous decade.To add on, there is also an increase in the amount of pollution in the sea like oil spills, toxic waste and many other enviromental factors which deprives the corals from the oxygen and nutrients that they need. The Biorock is a new technology which incorporates electrolysis in it’s design. Using electrolysis, the Biorock encouraging the growth of corals, although it takes many years ( 3-4 years).
The Biorock Technology functions by putting a low current through the Biorock and anode(approx. 1.5V and mostly made of steel as it is cheap), allowing calcium carbonate to form on the cathode and speed up the growth of corals. This current is not high so it is not very dangerous to man which goes into the sea. The electrolysis rate is directly proportioned to that of the calcium carbonate formed and the calcium carbonate formed is directly proportioned to that of the growth of the corals on the cathode. Therefore, knowing what material and temperature is good for electrolysis could help in Bio-rocks to speed up the growth of corals even faster.
5.2 Areas for further study
We can further research and experiment on which temperature is the ultimate temperature for coral growth and apply that in practical application. The electrolysis rate is directly proportioned to the corals growth on the Bio-rock so the experiment data would also be able to help us with the best condition for the corals growth.
We can also find out which voltage is safe to humans when passed through seawater but can also be used in our experiment. So, we could use fish for our experiment instead of normal humans. Different amount of voltage can be applied to each of the set up. We can observe in which set-up has the least number of fish died(or no fish died). That certain amount of voltage will most probably be the most safe for being supplied to the cathodes in the sea so that humans or any other living creatures swimming by it would not get harmed.
But if the voltage is too low (>0.5v) , it will take longer for calcium carbonate to form on the cathode. Most Bio-rocks in the sea has a voltage of 1.5v so we may use that voltage. Also, the cathode material we may be using is most likely made out of steel as it is cheap and easy to get.
We will most likely be using batteries instead of direct power supply. This is because, 1.5V cannot be supplied by the adaptor as the minimum voltage the adapter supplies is 3V. We will also have to plan the arrangement of the batteries so as to ensure that the right amount of voltage is supplied to the set-ups to ensure a fair experiment.
We may also go for a mini camp to make a real life sized Biorock and try it out at sea to see if it would work. This will also help us observe if the results we got from our experiment in the lab is similar as the results he are going to get in the real sea. Though the salinity of the water is the same, there are still some differences between the salt solution we made at the lab and the actual seawater such as the tide, temperature change etc. Through this we can also observe the reaction of the animals when the cathodes are placed in their habitat.