Letting No Microbe Go Undetected
Prevailing methods of microbial analysis for drinking water have been in use for more than 100 years, and they identify 1 percent or less of the microorganisms in our water. To bring drinking water analysis into the 21st century, Milwaukee-based Microbe Detectives has developed technology that enables identifying fully 100 percent of the microorganisms in water. This revolutionary technology was developed by Trevor Ghylin as part of his work for Ph.D. in civil and environmental engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the company was part of the initial class of the “Business. Research. Entrepreneurship. In Wisconsin” (BREW) accelerator. The company has benefited from its proximity to UW-Milwaukee’s School of Freshwater Sciences, and has received computational science support from the Milwaukee Institute.
New Partnership Will Boost Impact
Today, Microbe Detectives has more than 100 customers including both public utilities and private companies. The company recently signed an agreement to license its technology to LuminUltra, a Canadian company that specializes in real-time assessment of microbial activity. Once detected with LuminUltra’s proprietary technology, microbes will be analyzed with Microbe Detectives’ analytical methods to determine whether they pose a health risk. Since LuminUltra has customers worldwide, the agreement represents a major expansion of Microbe Detectives’ sphere of impact.