Research

enviroCORE is a world class research centre

enviroCORE is a world class research centre in Sustainable  Bioenvironmental Technologies in the niche areas of: Ecology and Biodiversity  Studies, Phytotechnologies for Waste Treatment; Biomass Production and Plant Biotransformation;  Environmental Sensors, Bio-indicators and Biosensors; Environmental Monitoring and Risk Assessment.

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  • Research Interests
  • Capabilities
  • Collaborators
  • ReNu2Farm Project

Research Interests

Bioenergy Crops and Biomass Biotransformation

  • Enzyme enhanced biomass pre-treatment for enhanced anaerobic digestion PI: Ann-Marie Enright
  • Optimisation of biomass pre-treatment for enhanced biotransformation into bioethanol. PI: Patricia Mulcahy
  • Development of endophytic biofertiliser systems for enhancing bio-energy crop production. PI: David Dowling
  • Genome sequencing and analysis of endophytic plant growth promoting bacteria. PI: David Dowling Kieran Germaine

Soil Quality

  • Use of ecopiling to remediate organic pollutants in soil. PI: Kieran Germaine
  • Analysis of regional lithium concentrations in the Blackstairs mountains. PI: Andrew Lloyd
  • Phytoremediation of heavy metals from soils. PI: David Ryan

Water Quality

Environmental Management and Monitoring

  • Developing vermitechnology for organic green waste treatment.PI: Thomae Kakouli-Duarte
  • Modelling wastewater treatment efficiency of constructed wetlands. PI: David Dowling Dina Brazil
  • Development of colorimetric flow through systems for monitoring water quality. PI: John Cleary
  • Use of nematodes as bio-indicators of soil quality.PI: Thomae Kakouli-Duarte
  • Whole cell microbial biosensors for monitoring polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). PI: David Dowling
  • Use of biomarkers in fish for monitoring stressors in aquatic systems.PI: Rosemary O’Hara

Ecology

Biocontrol

  • Combined plant associated bacteria and entomopathogenic nematode inocula for crop protection and plant growth promotion. PI: Thomae Kakouli-Duarte
  • Biological control of plant parasitic nematodes using plant associated bacteria. PI: Thomae Kakouli-Duarte
  • Vermitechnology products for plant growth and crop protection. PI: Thomae Kakouli-Duarte Andrew Lloyd

Capabilities

enviroCORE has delegated authority to confer both Master of Science (MSc) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) awards.  We have a wide range of research expertise including (but not limited to) the following areas:

  • Microbiological analysis – microbial identification, microbial ecology studies, microbiome studies, phenotypic profiling.  laboratory and medium scale (20L) production of microbial  cultures.
  • Genetic studies – gene detection and quantification, genome analysis, genotyping, gene expression studies, genetic engineering, genetic tagging, bioinformatics.
  • Protein purification and analysis.
  • Plant cultivation and growth analysis.
  • Organic and inorganic chemical analysis of samples.
  • Soil, water and plant analysis.
  • Anaerobic digestion analysis.
  • High through put microbial isolation and screening.
  • Laboratory scale, greenhouse scale and field scale experiments/trials.
  • Microscopy – microphotography.
  • Nematode and insect culture techniques and bioassays.
  • Nematode community analysis.
  • Nematode ecotoxicology.
  • Experimental design.
  • Environmental modelling.
  • Tissue/cell culture.
  • Data collection, collation and Interpretation.
  • Statistical analysis of data.

Collaborators

In enviroCORE we work with both National and International research institutes, SMEs and multi-national companies to develop innovative technologies for environmental management and monitoring, remediation, sustainable agriculture and bioprocessing.

Our Research Institute Collaborators:

  • Teagasc National Crops Research Centre Oakpark Carlow (Ireland).
  • The James Hutton Institute (Scotland).
  • Shandong Academy of Sciences (SDAS), China.
  • University College Cork (Ireland).
  • NUI Maynooth (Ireland).
  • NUI Galway (Ireland).
  • Queen’s University Belfast, (U.K.).
  • University of British Colombia (Canada).
  • University of Madrid (Spain).
  • University of Évora (Portugal).
  • Agricultural University of Athens (Greece).

Companies we work with:

  • Merck Sharpe and Dome (Carlow).
  • Maxol Ltd (Ireland).
  • Greencore Ltd (Carlow).
  • AllTech Ireland Ltd.
  • Ballon Meats (SME Carlow).
  • EnviroSurveying Ltd (UK).
  • Danisco Seed Inc  (Multinational, Denmark).
  • Verde Environmental Group (Multinational,  Ireland).
  • Patnav Ltd (SME Kilkenny).
  • Ocean Leaves Ltd  (SME, Kilkenny).
  • CNP Water and Environmental (SME Carlow).
  • Inter-Euro Technology Ltd (SME, Carlow).
  • TE Laboratories Ltd (SME, Carlow).

ReNu2Farm Project

The ReNu2Farm project is designed to increase the recycling rates for the plant nutrients nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) in the primary food production chain in Northwest Europe (NWE). Up to now, farmers have essentially been using artificial fertilisers, for which the EU is heavily dependent on imports. Moreover, the production of artificial fertiliser requires large amounts of energy. Paradoxically, however, there are several regions with a nutrient surplus in NWE. There are also technologies for recovering those nutrients, but until now they have remained little-used by farmers. The project aims to increase the use of these recovered nutrients throughout Europe.

More information on the ReNu2Farm Project

Project Partners

  1. Institute of Technology Carlow, Ireland
  2. Cork Institute of Technology, Ireland
  3. University of Limerick, Ireland
  4. Arvalis Institut du Vegetal, France
  5. Soil Concept SA, Luxembourg
  6. Outotec Gmbh & Co. KG, Germany
  7. Nutrienten Management Institut BV Netherlands
  8. Unversit Gent, Belgium
  9. Inagro, Belgium