BioLight Applications

Rapid Acute Chemical Toxicity Testing for Wastewater Using BioLight

Testing of wastewater often includes sampling from various points.  The types of wastewater handled by the facility will determine what is required for testing. Where there is industrial waste or other potentials for toxicity entering the system, a screening test using rapid toxicity testing such as the BioLight Reagent (Aliivibrio fischeri) and BioLight Toxy luminometer is a source of detection allowing for decisions on-site, without sending samples to the lab.

Prior to beginning toxicity testing, it is important to establish a baseline. This should be done when the plant is operating normally with no known issues.  Samples are taken over a period of days with 20 sample points to be tested, using BioLight reagents, consumables and luminometer.  This baseline will be used to compare the normal level of toxicity in multiple areas of the plant.

Influent testing is important for industrial plants that handle incoming waste streams and can also include trucked waste.  Use of a rapid toxicity test such as BioLight for analyzing samples from the lift stations is useful to understand higher than normal levels entering the plant.  Changes to pre-treatment can be managed quickly if toxicity is present as well as the ability to transfer to holding tanks or other mechanisms used to ensure proper treatment.  This will help in protecting the biobed with levels that could cause an upset.  Samples can also be taken upstream to help identify the contributor of the toxic load.  These samples can be tested in field using the portable BioLight Toxy luminometer.

Dependent on the expected levels or baseline levels of the toxicity in the influent stream there are several applications available for testing.  Expected higher levels would start out at a low concentration such as the 2% test.  If this is too concentrated or baseline levels are not known to be toxic, the 45% test could be used.

 

In process testing:  is performed to ensure that all processes where the water stream passes and receives treatment are functioning properly and no toxicity remains in the stream prior to effluent release. 

The Basic test is most often used for in process testing.  At this point there would not be expected high levels of toxicity remaining or the need to do multiple dilutions of the concentration.

Effluent Testing:  using rapid acute toxicity testing such as the BioLight technology is beneficial in confirming that there is no toxicity in the effluent stream that will be discharged into surface water or into a sewer system.  Performing internal process control testing for toxicity and doing check testing before release of effluent or before the EPA required test method for Whole Effluent Testing (WET) can give you peace of mind (WET) tests were developed as a tool for evaluating the potential harmful effects of effluents discharged into surface waters. Failure of the WET test can cause significant issues for the water facility such as requirements to do a toxicity reduction evaluation which includes many toxicity tests and added NPDES testing for WET throughout the year to ensure compliance.  WET testing done at the laboratory by the EPA method is expensive.  The failure of WET testing can also result in fines to the facility.  Use of a screening method such as BioLight for acute toxicity testing prior to effluent release will allow action to be taken in a timely manner to identify any issues in the plant and address the issues before sending samples for regulatory analysis. (USA focus)

A WET test application is available for use with the BioLight Toxy with BioLight reagent and consumables for running effluent samples. 

Rapid Acute Chemical Toxicity Testing for Early Warning in Drinking Water Using BioLight

Influent or raw water coming into a drinking water facility from a surface water source, active field connections or distribution water that has been treated and is ready to be released to the public, are the areas of concern related to potential toxicity.  The source water is tested before or as it enters the facility and sometimes at various points throughout the intake for pH, chlorine, Total Coliform and others, but acute toxicity is not a regulated test.  Use of a screening test for rapid toxicity testing like our Biolight Toxicity method which utilizes the industry recognized bacterium, AliiVibrio Fischeri is a source of protection and early warning for drinking water facilities.  Biolight Toxy with BioLight reagents and consumables provide a 30-minute test that can be used to make decisions at a screening level. Should there be an indication of a change in the water, such as a sudden drop or rise in the pH.  This would be a sign of the presence of an organic chemical compound. What if it is inorganic? Using a toxicity screening method to further test the water gives a better picture. Testing results are based on the changes in the EC50 (effective concentration 50%) of the samples measured with a luminometer that calculates the light loss of the bacteria once exposed to a sample at 5 and 15 minutes. Biolight Toxy is the leading innovation in the market to measure toxicity using Aliivibrio Fischeri.  Significant light loss at 5 minutes indicates an organic compound and significant loss at 15 minutes indicates an inorganic compound. This change is then compared to the baseline.  A decision can quickly be made if the EC50 levels are high to perform additional testing.  This would be done at an outside lab to confirm what the toxic compound is.  Rapid response can also be taken so that the water does not get out to the distribution system.

Prior to staring regular sample testing for acute toxicity, it is important to establish a baseline. This should be done when the plant is operating normally with no known issues.  Samples are taken over a period of days with 20 sample points to be tested.  This baseline will be used to compare what the normal level of toxicity is in each of the areas of the plant, typically the same areas where the bacteria samples are collected.  Without a baseline, there is nothing to compare.  This baseline may be required seasonally as things change in the environment that will naturally affect the source water such as heavy rains, melting snow and more.

 

Rapid Acute Chemical Toxicity Testing for Emergency Response Using BioLight

Being prepared with a toolbox of technologies for testing water is critical in the event of an emergency response. Having options such as test kits instruments and reagents on site can provide rapid results.  These technologies are an integral part of taking immediate action.  Once these initial field tests have been completed, it will give screening level results with an idea of what it is or what it is not.  This will help make decisions on the next steps.  One of the next steps will be sending samples to a laboratory for confirmatory testing.  The rapid screening test will also offer some details to the lab to identify the appropriate analysis to run to find the contaminant.  Using Aqua Sciences BioLight Toxy luminometer with BioLight reagents and consumables offers rapid 20-minute testing for acute chemical toxicity.  This will give screening level results and information on if the contaminant is organic or inorganic.  BioLight toxicity testing uses the marine bacterium Aliivibrio Fischeri which is sensitive to over 3600 chemical compounds simultaneously. 

When using the BioLight technology for emergency response, samples are taken where an accidental or intentional spill of a chemical compound may have occurred.  This testing can occur in many places such as source water intake, water towers, rivers, lakes or reservoirs.  The BioLight System can easily be taken to a stream, river, lake or other areas where there is suspect of toxic contamination to perform testing in the field.  The bioluminescent bacterium, Aliivibrio Fischeri elicits light and can alert to toxins through the percent light loss of the reagent after it is exposed to the sample.  Some toxicity would be expected, but high levels of light loss would be an indicator of a toxic chemical.  This information can then be used to close-down the area, divert the source water coming into a plant and to alert the laboratory immediately so that they can do chemical testing when the samples arrive to determine specifically what the contaminant is.  Having this type of tool in your emergency response toolbox can be useful in taking immediate action and understanding next steps. 

mining applications

Rapid Acute Chemical Toxicity Testing for Mining Applications Using BioLight

Toxicity testing is used in mining to compare processes and to measure changes in effluent quality.  This helps the understanding of relative contributions of the mine from multiple discharge situations.  Toxicity testing for regulatory compliance requires a full EPA approved bioassay test in a certified laboratory, which is costly with longer turn-around times.  Use of the well-known bioluminescent test using a marine bacterium AliiVibrio Fischeri, the BioLight technology will assist in testing on site or in the facility to ensure that the mining effluent will meet the compliance requirements for acute toxicity.  The BioLight method for WET offers a specific test for Whole Effluent Toxicity (WET) allowing an understanding of the effluent stream and providing early warning of increased toxicity. This allows for making changes to the process or equipment used in the process if required.  Once any changes have been made additional screening tests should be performed to confirm that the toxicity levels have returned to an acceptable level.   Toxicity screening allows rapid decisions and helps to avoid failures and fines for exceeding toxicity limits when NPDES compliance testing is done at the laboratory.

Effluent samples should be collected where it poses the greatest risk in having an adverse impact on the environment.  BioLight’s technology can assist with results to guide clean up.

Rapid Toxicity Testing for Oil and Gas Samples Using BioLight

Offshore oil and gas is an area that is well served by the use of the BioLight Toxy luminometer with BioLight reagents and consumables for rapid acute toxicity testing.  There are limitations on testing space and locations for sending samples to a lab.  This makes an alternative to the lab bioassay test attractive by using a fieldbased screening method.  The marine bacterium Aliivibrio Fischeri along with BioLight Toxy for reading results is a well-established technology that is portable, easy to use, repeatable and sensitive. 

Acute toxicity testing can be used to monitor discharges to predict the toxicity of the waste stream and criteria for discharge.  This screening offers a way to understand potential toxic reactions of the mixing of oilfield chemicals.  Some chemicals may be non-toxic alone, but when mixed with other chemicals can become toxic causing a synergistic effect.  If toxic results are found using the screening test, samples can be sent to the lab for additional testing for toxicity or chemical analysis.

Toxicity testing is required for drill cuttings, drilling muds and process water for discharge.  Some authorities require biomonitoring data, but it is difficult to get samples to a lab or quickly determine compliance status.  The BioLight technology is useful to assess the effects of changes to the operational procedures, performance of clean up technologies and assessment of water toxicity when wells are put back into service.

oil and gas testing

Oil extraction generates produced water, creating a complex mixture of treatment chemicals.  Produced water is annually discharged in bodies of water and is the primary contributor for oil discharges from offshore operations.

To protect the marine environment, produced water should be tested from offshore platforms and oil platforms in the field that require high levels of water for the process.  Chemical analysis and ecotoxicological tests are performed in order to assess the potential impact of produced water on the marine environment.

Studies done through the years using Aliivibrio Fischeri, formerly Vibrio fisheri show that this sensitive marine bacterium is useful for testing produced water.  The BioLight Toxy instrument can be used for field portable testing and taken to sites for testing rapid toxicity along with the BioLight reagents and consumables.  This allows for toxicity results right on site and immediate information on the water quality, treatment required or if at the site platform, disposal of the water by hauling it off site.

Additionally, the BioLight Toxy, reagents and consumables can be used to monitor acute antimicrobial performance to better understand the pipeline corrosion protection used.  This would be for offshore testing of packages designed for antimicrobial protection.

Rapid Acute Chemical Toxicity Testing for Soils and Sediments Using BioLight

Sediment toxicity testing has become increasingly important for assessing the risk potential based on the levels of contamination in the sediment. The data is valuable in the assessment and remediation efforts of contaminated sites, research and monitoring.  Sediment toxicity testing may also be used on projects where dredging or disposing of dredged materials takes place. 

Soil and sediments have been tested and studied for almost 40 years for toxicity contamination.  Sediment toxicity can occur from environmental contaminants being continually introduced, chemical waste that is not handled properly, spills from boats, industry and other waste pollution.

Many programs use a combination of test methods, including bioluminescent testing with Aliivibrio Fischeri and other standardized protocols. There can be a variation between test methods or possibly in the way that the data is interpreted. Aqua Science offers a battery of tests that can be used to determine contamination from sediment toxicity.

 

Soils and sediments would require use of the Solids method found in the BioLight Toxy instrument along with the BioLight reagent and consumables.  Additionally Aqua Science offers TOXkits, rapid stock culture-independent toxicity test kits.

Rapid Acute Chemical Toxicity Testing for Wastewater Using BioLight

Testing of wastewater often includes sampling from various points.  The types of wastewater handled by the facility will determine what is required for testing. Where there is industrial waste or other potentials for toxicity entering the system, a screening test using rapid toxicity testing such as the BioLight Reagent (Aliivibrio fischeri) and BioLight Toxy luminometer is a source of detection allowing for decisions on-site, without sending samples to the lab.


Prior to beginning toxicity testing, it is important to establish a baseline. This should be done when the plant is operating normally with no known issues.  Samples are taken over a period of days with 20 sample points to be tested, using BioLight reagents, consumables and luminometer.  This baseline will be used to compare the normal level of toxicity in multiple areas of the plant.

Influent testing is important for industrial plants that handle incoming waste streams and can also include trucked waste.  Use of a rapid toxicity test such as BioLight for analyzing samples from the lift stations is useful to understand higher than normal levels entering the plant.  Changes to pre-treatment can be managed quickly if toxicity is present as well as the ability to transfer to holding tanks or other mechanisms used to ensure proper treatment.  This will help in protecting the biobed with levels that could cause an upset.  Samples can also be taken upstream to help identify the contributor of the toxic load.  These samples can be tested in field using the portable BioLight Toxy luminometer.
Dependent on the expected levels or baseline levels of the toxicity in the influent stream there are several applications available for testing.  Expected higher levels would start out at a low concentration such as the 2% test.  If this is too concentrated or baseline levels are not known to be toxic, the 45% test could be used.

In process testing is performed to ensure that all processes where the water stream passes and receives treatment are functioning properly and no toxicity remains in the stream prior to effluent release. 
The Basic test is most often used for in process testing.  At this point there would not be expected high levels of toxicity remaining or the need to do multiple dilutions of the concentration.

Effluent Testing using rapid acute toxicity testing such as the BioLight technology is beneficial in confirming that there is no toxicity in the effluent stream that will be discharged into surface water or into a sewer system.  Performing internal process control testing for toxicity and doing check testing before release of effluent or before the EPA required test method for Whole Effluent Testing (WET) can give you peace of mind (WET) tests were developed as a tool for evaluating the potential harmful effects of effluents discharged into surface waters. Failure of the WET test can cause significant issues for the water facility such as requirements to do a toxicity reduction evaluation which includes many toxicity tests and added NPDES testing for WET throughout the year to ensure compliance.  WET testing done at the laboratory by the EPA method is expensive.  The failure of WET testing can also result in fines to the facility.  Use of a screening method such as BioLight for acute toxicity testing prior to effluent release will allow action to be taken in a timely manner to identify any issues in the plant and address the issues before sending samples for regulatory analysis. (USA focus)

A WET test application is available for use with the BioLight Toxy with BioLight reagent and consumables for running effluent samples.