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An Environmentally-Friendly Solution to Pipeline Explosions

Raised toward our $5,500 Goal
137 Donors
Project has ended
Project ended on October 28, at 12:00 PM EDT
Project Owners

An Environmentally-Friendly Solution to Pipeline Explosions

Our Research

Our project is trying to see how a biological solution can provide a more sustainable and environmentally-friendly way of transporting heavy crude oil. Heavy crude oil has several compounds such as asphaltenes, that clump together which causes blockages in pipelines, leading to pipeline explosions. These explosions cause severe damage to aquatic life, and people living in nearby communities. We are testing combinations of enzymes to determine the reduction potential of the asphaltene aggregates. By reducing the asphaltene aggregation, heavy crude oil will be able to travel more efficiently through pipelines and effectively diminish pipeline explosions.


Our project is seeking $5500 to help fund our research project. This amount is crucial in completing our research project. With this money, we plan on buying all of our materials necessary and rent laboratory equipment to complete our experiments. The materials and laboratory equipment necessary for our project will help us accomplish our research that will be presented in our Senior Thesis Conference, Spring 2018.

Our Team

We are Team BACTERIA from the Gemstone Program in the Honors College! Team BACTERIA is a team of eleven undergraduate researchers that plan to design, conduct, and present an unique research project. Our team has been fortunate to be mentored by Dr. Siddhartha Das from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at University of Maryland. Our team has been working this past year on finalizing our project hypothesis, methodology, and potential enzyme choices. We are now ready to conduct our experiments this year and will be analyzing our results for our Senior Thesis Conference in Spring 2018.

Team Members

Our team is very excited to begin our experiments. We have a highly diverse team of undergraduate students that are highly collaborative and motivated to work on this project. Our team has been working together for the past year formulating our research project. Each team member has been able to contribute something unique to our project. All of our team members will be working together until Spring 2018 to present our findings. Our undergraduate team includes:

  • Julia Abolafia, Environmental Science and Technology
  • Jack Cowan, Computer Science
  • Anna Harrison, Physiology and Neurobiology
  • Jackson Hensley, Chemistry
  • Tracy Kim, Criminology and Criminal Justice
  • Wing-Mei Ko, Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Megan Le, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
  • Hema Manivannan, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
  • Lorena Rivera-Rubio, Biochemistry
  • Prateeti Sarker, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
  • Radhika Tyagi, Biology and English

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Gifts in support of the University of Maryland are accepted and managed by the University of Maryland College Park Foundation, Inc., an affiliated 501(c)(3) organization authorized by the Board of Regents.  Contributions to the University of Maryland are tax deductible as allowed by law.  Please see your tax advisor for details.

Choose a giving level


Oil Novice

This donation will help us purchase gloves, goggles, and lab coats. We will send an email detailing our progress and our use of your donation.


Oil Enthusiast

This donation will help us purchase pipettes, weighing boats, and other measuring tools for our laboratory work. We will send you a signed card expressing our gratitude for your donation.


Oil Expert

This will help purchase glassware such as beakers, flasks, and graduated cylinders. We will give a shout out on our social media platforms expressing our gratitude for your donation.


Oil Baron

This donation will help us purchase chemicals necessary to conduct our experiments. You will receive a team photo, signed by us expressing our gratitude for your donation.


Oil Tycoon

This donation will help us purchase the equipment necessary to analyze our results. You will receive an acknowledgement of your donation on our thesis presentation.


Oil Mogul

This donation will help us purchase our enzymes that we will be using to test our hypothesis. You will receive acknowledgement of your donation on our thesis paper and we will send a copy as a thank you.

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