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Automated system for an efficient biomonitoring of water quality

Scientists of the CSIC and the Universidad de Castilla La Mancha have developed a low cost system for the identification of biological specimens. It is an automated and programmable prototype, which enables the determination of water quality indexes.

The prototype monitors water quality in rivers and lakes. Source: PixaBay.The diatoms are an algae group that can be used as a biomarker of water quality. Due to the difficulties to identify them, which usually is done by optical microscopy, scientists are working to develop new techniques that could help in this task.

The researchers at the CSIC and Universidad de Castilla La Mancha have created a system that assesses the biological quality in many aquatic ecosystems through the biotic indexes of the structure of the diatom community. The device takes pictures through a transmission microscope with LED lighting in the visible spectrum, and processes them automatically to enhance the analysis of specimens.

The device takes pictures through a transmission microscope with LED lighting in the visible spectrum

The prototype enables obtaining an efficient assessment of the water quality indexes, especially in rivers and lakes, and it can rapidly detect changes in the water chemistry. The system would contribute to a sustainable management of the environment, as well as to protect biodiversity in aquatic ecosystems. Moreover, given its low cost, it would be very useful in developing countries. In this sense, it could be adapted to different applications, such as pollen, bacteria or histopathology cells identification.

Contact

Dra. Patricia Thomas Vielma
Vicepresidencia Adjunta de Transferencia del Conocimiento Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC)
Tel.: (+34) 91 568 18 25
Correo-e: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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Scientists of the CSIC and the Universidad de Castilla La Mancha have developed a low cost system for the identification of biological specimens. It is an automated and programmable prototype, which enables the determination of water quality indexes.