Imperial College London

Dr Marin Sawa

Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Life Sciences

Visiting Researcher Association







704Sir Ernst Chain BuildingSouth Kensington Campus





Publication Type

7 results found

Sawa M, 2018, Solar Biobattery: Thin-film Biophotovoltaic Technology - from Research to Industry Collaboration, 8th European Algae Industry Summit

Conference paper

Sawa M, Fantuzzi A, Bombelli P, Howe CJ, Hellgardt K, Nixon PJet al., 2017, Electricity generation from digitally printed cyanobacteria, Nature Communications, Vol: 8, ISSN: 2041-1723

Microbial biophotovoltaic cells exploit the ability of cyanobacteria and microalgae to convert light energy into electrical current using water as the source of electrons. Such bioelectrochemical systems have a clear advantage over more conventional microbial fuel cells which require the input of organic carbon for microbial growth. However, innovative approaches are needed to address scale-up issues associated with the fabrication of the inorganic (electrodes) and biological (microbe) parts of the biophotovoltaic device. Here we demonstrate the feasibility of using a simple commercial inkjet printer to fabricate a thin-film paper-based biophotovoltaic cell consisting of a layer of cyanobacterial cells on top of a carbon nanotube conducting surface. We show that these printed cyanobacteria are capable of generating a sustained electrical current both in the dark (as a ‘solar bio-battery’) and in response to light (as a ‘bio-solar-panel’) with potential applications in low-power devices.

Journal article

Sawa M, 2017, Algaerium Bioprinter and Algae Printing, Publisher: Hatje Cantz, ISBN: 978-3-7757-4336-5


Sawa M, 2017, Algae Printing and Algaerium Bioprinter, Publisher: Promopress, ISBN: 9788416504657

This compilation of food design projects illustrates the possibilities new technologies provide to designers and the ways society perceives food.


Sawa M, An ecosophical intersection of design and algal biotechnology:Algaerium Bioprinter and Algae Printing, Shaping the Future 2017

The concept of ‘ecosophy’ by the French activist and psychoanalyst Félix Guattari sheds light on the root of ecological and sustainability issues in the intersections of natural environment, social relations and the mind of inhabitants. I will discuss an ecosophical intersection of design and algal biotechnology with my research-based biodesign outcomes: Algaerium Bioprinter (2013) and Algae Printing (2013-2015). The former is a concept design installation contextualising the latter a technology of the digital printing of living algal cells. Describing these outcomes, the first half of this talk illustrates domestication of algal biotechnology, a distinctive character that connects the three domains of ecosophy. I will show developed applications of the Algae Printing technology in the areas of food, energy and environment. Biodesign is expounded in terms of multifunctionality and semi-living systems along with ecosophical implications.The second half will explain the collaborative interdisciplinary process between the designer and algal scientists, which drove the conception of ideas and making of biodesign. The laboratory-based research practice will be described, demonstrating two-way collaboration and a co-inventor role of designer in scientific research.The talk will end by pointing towards an emerging shirt from ‘intellectual consumption’ to ‘utilitarian consumption’, from biodesign to bioindustry.

Conference paper

Sawa M, 2016, The laboratory life of a designer at the intersection with algal biotechnology, ARQ-ARCHITECTURAL RESEARCH QUARTERLY, Vol: 20, Pages: 65-72, ISSN: 1359-1355

Journal article

Sawa M, 2014, Algaerium and Marin Sawa interview in 'Bio Design Nature, Science, Creativity', Publisher: Thames and Hudson, ISBN: 9780500291504

Bio Design examines some seventy projects (concepts, prototypes and completed designs) that cover the fields of architecture, industrial processes, education, fine art, material engineering and bioengineering.


This data is extracted from the Web of Science and reproduced under a licence from Thomson Reuters. You may not copy or re-distribute this data in whole or in part without the written consent of the Science business of Thomson Reuters.

Request URL: Request URI: /respub/WEB-INF/jsp/search-html.jsp Query String: respub-action=search.html&id=00794275&limit=30&person=true