PROJECT Real Time monitoring of SEA contaminants by an autonomous lab-on-a-chip biosensor (SEA-on-a-CHIP)


European Union - FP7 Ocean 2013 (614168)




Institut de Diagnòstic Ambiental i Estudis de l'Aigua (IDAEA-CSIC) and ICRA


Damià Barceló




ICRA researchers participate in the European project Real time monitoring of SEA contaminants by an autonomous lab-on-a-chip biosensor (SEA-on-a-CHIP) within the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Union on the development and implementation of automatic sensors operated by remote control in seawater. The sensors are like little "floating laboratories" to detect various chemical contaminants that exist in marine waters.

The project is led by the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) and involves 17 research groups from nine different European countries (Austria, Spain, France, Greece, Italy , Norway, Portugal, United Kingdom, Romania and Sweden).

The team of Damià Barceló, director of the ICRA and researcher of the IDAEA-CSIC, and Marinel·la Farré of the IDAEA-CSIC, coordinates this project in which Sara Rodríguez-Mozaz researcher of ICRA participates and also 16 other groups belonging to 9 European countries.

To monitor the quality of marine waters, especially at points of potential impact of pollution, such as coastal waters, usually perform routine sampling of water sent to specialized laboratories for further analysis in the course of 2-5 days. In some cases, information about water pollution can be of crucial importance and should be provided quickly. And that is why you need to have faster analytical methods that give you an idea of this pollution. To this end, this project aims to develop new miniaturized sensors relocated periodically take samples and perform analysis in real time. It is "floating laboratories" totally autonomous, with a source of energy, reagents needed for analysis, and the essential technology for data transmission and reception. Such devices can perform simultaneous analysis of several compounds selected as the most representative in impacted areas, such as coastal areas. Remotely, you can not only have access to the information collected by sensors, but also change the sequence of measurement, and to increase such frequency analysis and/or focus on the study of a particular pollutant. It is in any case a very economical and flexible technology that can be adapted to the needs of control.

Over the next nearly four years the project will work on the development and validation of this sensor with a specific application in aquaculture facilities, including rapid assessment of 8 contaminants that affect the production or aquaculture are either products of the same industry that may affect the environment and human health such as antibiotics and pesticides. Although the system will be evaluated for this particular application, it is easily adaptable to other target compounds or other situations such as the case of coastal waters. of Europe 6
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