Technological advancements have made it faster, easier and safer to monitor and analyze water according to increasingly stringent guidelines.

By 2018, the global market for water analysis instrumentation is projected to reach $3 billion, according to a late-September report released by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. (GIA). The water analysis industry has seen dramatic growth in recent years due to a rapid growth in population and increasing concerns over water contamination. The resounding call for safe, clean water has been meet with tighter, more stringent water quality regulations. While developed markets have been on top of environmental water regulations for a while now, water quality issues and monitoring technologies in developing markets is just starting to take off—and this is what is expected to spearhead global growth in the coming years. Specifically, according to the GIA report, Asia-Pacific is expected to emerge as the fastest growing market with a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 11.3 percent. Again, some of the same factors are expected to drive this growth, including environmental concerns and increasing stringency.

TOC analysis
Raw source water is treated to remove natural organic matter (NOM) during the drinking water treatment process. Acids contained in the residual NOM of water undergoing disinfection by chlorination react with chlorine to form disinfection byproducts such as trihalomethanes (THMs) and haloacetic acids (HAAs), which have been linked to cancer. Total organic carbon (TOC) analysis is an indicator of NOM and THM levels in source water and finished drinking water. It is also one of the most popular analytical techniques used to measure and monitor drinking water quality. The U.S. EPA has issued two rules regulating levels of disinfectants and disinfection byproducts in drinking water. The Stage 1 Disinfectants and Disinfection Byproducts Rules (D/DBPR) took effect in 2002, lowering the permissible levels of THMs to 80 µg/L and regulated levels for five HAAs, bromate and chlorite in drinking water for the first time. The Stage 2 D/DBPR was proposed in 2006 with compliance dates phased in over time based on the number of people served by the water system. However, the phasing has ended and all public water systems must be in compliance with the lower permissible levels by Oct. 1, 2013.  

Online TOC analyzers have emerged as the preeminent technology with their ability to incorporate automation and real-time evaluation. In fact, according to the GIA report, online water analysis instrumentation is projected to emerge as the fastest growing market. Xylem Analytics’ new 9210p Online TOC Analyzer integrates advanced capabilities and the “online” trend to provide a robust instrument for routine monitoring and regulatory compliance reporting in drinking water. It uses proven heated persulfate oxidation technology for accurate, dependable operation. Virtually all organic compounds dissolved in water can be oxidized with high efficiency by this technique. The instrument can be wall- or rack-mounted in indoor or shade-sheltered outdoor locations. Instrument calibration is accomplished in minutes using a simple protocol. The TOC analyzer maintains excellent long-term calibration stability, providing accurate and dependable data with minimal maintenance.

TOC analyzers also help tackle the requirements of advanced wastewater treatment. GE Analytical Instruments’ InnovOx On-Line TOC analyzer provides sample handling robustness and instrument uptime for process, environmental and wastewater TOC analysis. The InnovOx series offers GE’s Supercritical Water Oxidation technology for improved reliability, uptime and robust handling of challenging sample matrices, such as brine and cellulose. The instrument features a dynamic linear working range of 0.5 to 50,000 ppm, 6-month calibration curve stability, user-configurable alarms and outputs and a color touchscreen display. It is easy to set up, operate and maintain, and offers a low cost of ownership. Typically, it can run 30 days without replacing reagents. The InnovOx On-Line is also versatile, and its multi-stream capability allows users to run up to five sample streams.

Hach Co., also recently introduced its BioTector B3500c TOC analyzer as a reliable safeguard to sensitive processes in clean water applications. The analyzer was specifically designed and engineered to meet the requirements of clean water applications, including condensate return, cooling water, potable water, pharmaceutical water and demineralized water. With patented Two Stage Advanced Oxidation Technology, the TOC analyzer provides reliability and uptime, without sacrificing accuracy. Reagents and the pump tool only have to be replenished twice a year, leading to a low cost of ownership and consumables purchases that don’t kill the bottom line. The compact analyzer can monitor two streams at one time.&p>

Multiparamater analysis

In addition to online systems for TOC analysis, the development of multiparameter instrumentation has played a pivotal role in transforming the market. Gone are the days when five different instruments were needed to record five different parameters of water. Multiple steps, instruments, workflows and calibrations can now be accomplished on one instrument. 

METTLER TOLEDO and Thermo Fisher Scientific recently partnered to develop a combined Titration/IC system that provides complete automation for testing properties and ions in drinking, ground, surface and wastewater. It improves efficiency by combining the determination of up to 20 different parameters from a single sample into a completely automated workflow. 

The titration system determines conductivity, pH value and alkalinity. The conditional capability of the titrator chooses the correct sample loop for anion analysis based on the conductivity of the sample. Meanwhile, the IC instruments provide analysis for common anions and cations. By combining the IC and titration results, the system provides results for total hardness, ion balance and carbonate hardness. All analyses on a single sample can be completed in 20 min with minimal operator interaction. After sample testing, the entire system is automatically cleaned and rinsed, eliminating any chance of sample carryover.

In-Situ Inc., has developed a multiparamater handheld analyzer, integrated with familiar technological capabilities. The company’s smarTROLL Multiparameter Handheld and iSitu Smartphone Application for environmental monitoring applications is ideal for water quality spot checks and can be used for any surface water monitoring application. No training time is required to use the probe or the familiar look of the smartphone application. Technicians can instantly read results for 14 water quality parameters from their smartphone—no bulky handheld meter is required. The meter measures dissolved oxygen (DO), conductivity, oxygen reduction potential (ORP), pH, salinity, total dissolved solids, water level, barometric pressure and temperature. The probe features EPA-approved, proprietary Rugged Dissolved Oxygen technology for instantaneous DO determinations. In Situ’s smarTROLL multiparamater handheld   analyzer combines  high-performance water  quality sensors with smartohone mobility.In Situ’s smarTROLL multiparamater handheld analyzer combines high-performance water quality sensors with smartohone mobility.

 
In-Situ’s iSitu App, designed to run on an iPhone, iPod touch or iPad, makes it easy to email data to colleagues and log site-specific data to a smartphone. The system includes a compact probe with field-tested smart sensors and a clip-on battery pack with Bluetooth wireless technology.
 
“Time and money are valuable resources. Environmental professionals need answers quickly and at their fingertips,” says Jon Firooz, VP of R&D and Marketing. “By developing an iPhone app that works seamlessly with our water quality probe, the smartphone now doubles as a water quality handheld meter, and that’s a smart move for a mobile workforce.”
 
Lastly, Hanna Instruments is debuting its new pH, conductivity and dissolved oxygen meter this month. The meter, called edge, is thin and lightweight, measuring ½" thick and weighing 9 oz. The meter’s key feature is its versatile design, which allows researchers to use it as a benchtop meter, a portable meter or even attached to a wall to free up valuable bench space in a laboratory. It boasts a wide viewing angle, a 5.5" LCD and a sensitive touch keypad. Additionally, edge works with digital smart electrodes. The advanced electrodes feature a built-in microchip that stores sensor type, ID and calibration information that is automatically retrieved by the instrument once the electrode is plugged in. 
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