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Algae Analysis Part Of Water Quality Assurance

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection has purchased two FlowCAM algae analysis machines from Fluid Imaging Technologies.

The particle imaging and analysis systems will be used to monitor source water for the presence of taste and odour-causing algae and cyanobacteria.

Deployed in water laboratories at two NYC DEP reservoirs, the FlowCAMs will support the daily delivery of one billion gallons of clean water to more than nine billion people. The VS-4 Algae Analysis kit will detect, identify and enumerate algal cells in water samples by taking a high resolution, full colour digital image of the individual cells detected. Proprietary pattern recognition technology can then be used to identify the species.

All images and data, such as size, shape and colour, are saved for further review and analysis using the VisualSpreadsheet software.

The patented FlowCAM uses a laser to excite the natural fluorescence of algal cells to trigger imaging, enabling highly efficient sorting of the relevant cells.

These algae analysis machines will boost NYC DEP’s water quality assurance efforts and enhance algae monitoring within the department, which has previously relied on manual microscopy.

By using the automated instruments, thousands of cells can be detected each minute and human error in identification and counting is greatly reduced.

Other public water suppliers have already seen the benefits of using Fluid Imaging Technologies equipment, including in Boston, Tampa, Tulsa, Indianopolis and Colorado Springs.

Edited by: Andrew Long
Last Updated: 25th June 2011