Toxicity monitor chosen for river cleaning project

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Modern Water, the owner of water technologies for the production of fresh water and monitoring of water quality, has collaborated with the University of Central Florida (UCF) to supply a Microtox M500 toxicity monitor. The monitor will assist with research into advanced treatment techniques which could provide a solution to the removal of Total Phosphorus from the Middle St Johns river basin in Central Florida. 

The Middle St Johns river has been found to have excessive concentrations of total phosphorous and current studies have indicated that conventional stormwater treatment methods are insufficient to provide the necessary level of water quality.

Reuse of byproduct materials, including fly ash, dried alum sludge (drinking water treatment residuals) and tyre crumb, which all have high phosphorous sorption capacities, were assessed as part of this study.

The adsorbents are typically low value but some of them could be considered environmentally hazardous and may pose a potential environmental risk so it was necessary to monitor the toxicity of these materials during the research.   

The UCF chose the Microtox M500 as it provides rapid toxicity testing with immediate results. This has allowed the university to make real-time adjustments in order to identify potential toxicity-related challenges.   

Dr Steven Duranceau, PE associate professor and director of the Environmental Systems Engineering Institute at the University of Central Florida, said: “We chose the Microtox M500 for its ease of use and rapid toxicity testing. This is important as this enables the toxicity testing to happen concurrently with the rest of the research project.” 

Simon Humphrey, Modern Water CEO, commented: “This study represents one of the first examples of using Microtox as part of a nutrient treatment technological evaluation and this example demonstrates yet another application for our rapid toxicity monitor.”