Micro Lux Chants: Sonification of Bioluminescent Bacteria’s Life Cycle

by Anmol Motikar

Sonification is the use of sound to convey information or data. It is an alternative to data visualization. Micro Lux Chants is a collaborative project between the ArtSciLab and the Gassensmith Lab (Biochemistry lab) at UT Dallas.

For this research project the team uses a species of bioluminescent bacteria called Vibrio Fischeri, a symbiotic bacteria, found in the belly of the Hawaiian Bobtail Squid.

“It is not always easy to visualize data. Sometimes the color/brightness of the bacteria is not enough to determine the point in their life cycle, so we chose to use sonification to perceptualize the data,” says Brian Merlo, who has a background in sound design and is currently a Senior in Biomedical Engineering.