Klapper, Isaac; Zhang, Tianyu; Seibold, Benjamin (Temple University. Libraries, 2015)
      We present a mathematical model that describes how cyanobacterial communities use natural light as a source of energy and water as a source of electrons to perform photosynthesis and therefore, grow and co-survive together with other bacterial species. We apply our model to a phototrophic population of bacteria, namely, cyanobacteria. Our model involves the use of light as a source of energy and inorganic carbon as a source of nutrients. First, we study a single species model involving only cyanobacteria, then we include heterotrophs in the two species model. The model consists of ordinary differential equations describing bacteria and chemicals evolution in time. Stability analysis results show that adding heterotrophs to a population of cyanobacteria increases the level of inorganic carbon in the medium, which in turns allows cyanobacteria to perform more photosynthesis. This increase of cyanobacterial biomass agrees with experimental data obtained by collaborators at the Center for Biofilm Engineering at Montana State University.