Development of Biological Obscurants
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AbstractIn Phase I, GeneXpress Informatics (GXI) and Dr. James P. Chambers of the University of Texas at San Antonio proposed to develop biological obscurants for battlefield applications based on the use of bacteriochlorophylls. Upon completion and presentation of results to MARCORSYSCOM, GXI and Chambers provided the necessary technical proof-of-concept for the Phase II deployment of a biological based obscurant. In Phase II, GXI and Dr. Chambers proposes to fabricate a biological obscurant prototype. The main goal of the Phase II program will be the development of biological molecules which have spectroscopic characteristics for optimal obscuration at wavelengths of interest to the MARCORSYSCOM and the DoD. Spectral absorption tuning of the chlorophyll compounds will be accomplished using site-directed mutagenesis of chlorophyll a oxygenase and genetic constructs developed in the Phase I. The emphasis will be placed on bacteria mutant strains and examination of pilot bioreactor processing. The ideal biological obscurant would use either both whole or extracted intact bacteria to obscure visible and infrared wavelengths. Pilot scale-up and dispersion method of the biological obscurants will also implemented in the Phase II resulting in a prototype dispersion system that will be tested and evaluated in the Phase II Option.
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