SPbU’s scientists and their colleagues from Belorussia are working on the research project “Inactivation of bacterial cells and slime by atmospheric-pressure low-temperature plasma jets generated by barrier and glow discharge”. The project is supported by RFBR and Belorussian Republican Foundation for Fundamental Research.  The research findings will be used in bio-medical devices, including those used for bacterial treatment.

In the joint grant, SPbU and Institute of Physics, NAN, Belorussia, are seeking for the sources of atmospheric-pressure low-temperature plasma and studying how it can influence the effectiveness of bacterial treatment. The scientists will perform a comprehensive diagnosis of gas discharges and plasma jets generated by them. They will also study how gas-dynamic conditions influence the length and structure of the jets; it will also define the plasma composition in comparison with electro-physical properties of the discharge.

“We are planning to carry out micro-biological research on how to inactivate the cell growth of the coliform bacterium by the barrier and glow discharge, — said the head of the project, senior research fellow of the Department of Physiology of SPbU, Candidate of Physics and Mathematics Olga Stepanova. —  The electronic microscopy will show morphological changes in the ultra-structure of the bacterial cells in a forming bio-slime treated by the discharge of two kinds”.

The research findings will help develop scientific methods to design and create gas-discharge devices in bio-medicine, in particular the sources of atmospheric-pressure low-temperature plasma jets generated at the out-put of the generator for bacterial treatment of living and synthetic materials, says the scientist.

The scientists in the physics of gas discharge and medical micro-biology who carry out the research project also work in the inter-disciplinary group formed at SPbU two years ago. They study plasma medicine to solve medical problems in infected wound healing and prevention of wound infections by atmospheric-pressure cold plasma.

SPbU’s scientists have developed and created a number of original sources of atmospheric-pressure low-temperature plasma: by corona and barrier discharge. The electronic microscopy showed morphological changes in the structure of the cells and slime of the coliform bacterium by the corona discharge.

Moreover, SPbU initiated a number of projects on finding the sources of low-temperature plasma through plasma jet of the barrier discharge. The scientists developed and created a high-voltage switched mode power supply unit that allows to regulate pulse repetition rate and duty cycle. This project, with its author Aleksandr Astafiev, SPbU’s researcher-engineer and a member of the current project, is a winner of the competition of the Foundation for support of the small enterprises in science and engineering UMNIK-2015.