biofouling    Biofouling is found in almost all circumstances where liquids are in contact with other materials. Industrially important examples include heat exchangers, cooling water pipelines and membrane systems, such as bioreactors and reverse osmosis desalination plants.

Biofouling is a major problem for any object dipped in the water, especially in seawater, in fact biological colonization starts just a few minutes/hours after the immersion. The micro- and macro- organisms settled on the material surface can, for example:

- cause/increase material corrosion (e.g. MIC, biocorrosion),

- decrease the flow inside pipelines,

- create a favourable environment for pathogenic microorganisms (e.g. Legionella) settlement/growth,

Therefore, appropriate countermeasures must be taken, in order to minimize the incidence of such problems.

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