School of Environment

Environmental Chemistry


Our Environmental Chemistry laboratories conduct chemical preparation and analysis primarily in support of our research programs studying freshwater and ecosystem ecology, carbon and nutrient cycling, and watershed biogeochemistry.

LECO Carbon-Nitrogen-Sulphur Elemental Analyser

Analytical and Preparation Facilities



LaCHAT QuikChem 8500 Series 2 | Environmental Science Lab Equipment

LaCHAT QuikChem 8500 Series 2

The QuikChem 8500 FIA (flow injection analysis) is used measurement of nutrient concentrations (N, P) in water samples from streams, lakes and marine systems. This is an automated system for analysis of clear liquid samples and extracted soil samples. The modular set up allows for testing of numerous analytes.  It is used by the School mainly for the analysis of NH3, Pox and Nox.

Read more.

Dionex ASE 200 accelerated solvent extractor | Environmental Science Lab Equipment

Dionex ASE 200 accelerated solvent extractor

The Dionex solvent extractor is used to separate compounds based on their solubilities.  This is done by using two liquids that do not mix; for example, water and an organic solvent.  This system has a number of applications and is used by the School for the determination of pesticides in soils.

Read more.

GBC Avanta Flame Atomic Absorption Spectrometer

GBC Cintra 2020 UV-Vis Spectrometer/Colorimeter

The Cintra Colorimeter uses the principle of ultraviolet visible absorption for the quantitative determination of different analytes such as transition metal ions, highly conjugated organic compounds and biological macromolecules.  This system is primarily used by the School for Chlorophyll, protein and nutrient determination.

Read more.

LECO CNS Elemental Analyser

Metrohm Ion Chromatograph 930 Compact IC Flex

The Metrohm IC uses a chromatography process that separates ions and polar molecules based on their affinity to the ion exchanger, and it works on almost any kinds of charged molecule.  The School primarily uses it for the determination of anions in geothermal water and in ash solutions (F, Cl, SO4, PO3 and B).

Read more.

Elementar Vario EL cube - Element analyser | Environmental Science Lab Equipment

Elementar Vario EL cube - Element analyser

The Vario EL cube uses a process where samples are analysed for their elemental and sometimes isotopic composition, which is accomplished through combustion analysis.  This technique burns samples through excess oxygen and collects the combustion products; carbon dioxide, water and nitric oxide.  The masses of these combustion products are used to calculate the composition of an unknown sample.  The School uses the Vario for CHN analysis in sediments, bones and synthetic organic compounds.

Read more.

Shimadzu TOC-L | Environmental Science Lab Equipment

Shimadzu TOC-L

The TOC-L can analyse Total Organic Carbon, Inorganic Carbon and Total Nitrogen.  This is accomplished using a combustion catalytic oxidation method, and provides an ultra wide range of from 4 mg/L to 30,000 mg/L with a detection limit of 4 mg/L.

Read more.

Trilogy Laboratory Fluorometer | Environmental Science Lab Equipment

Trilogy Laboratory Fluorometer

The Flrorometer is used to measure parameters of fluorescence; its intensity and wavelength distribution of emission spectrum after excitation by a certain spectrum of light.  These paramenters are used to identify the presence and the amount of specific molecules in a medium. 

Read more.

Agilent Microwave Plasma Atomic Emission Spectroscopy (MP-AES 4200)

The MP-AES is used for simultaneous multi-analyte determination of major and minor elements.  It employs microwave energy to produce a plasma discharge using nitrogen.  Samples are typically nebulized prior to interaction with the plasma.  The atomised sample passes through the plasma and electrons are promoted to an excited state.  The light emitted is separated by spectrum and the intensities of each is measured by a detector, this can be determined to parts per million (PPM).  This is used by the School for the analysis of Cations and metals.

Read more.

Supporting infrastructure and equipment

  • Sartorius Arium DI System
  • HACH SwnsION pH3
  • EUTECH instruments Con 700 conductivity/C/ F meter
  • Thermo Scientific Labline water bath
  • Speedwave MWS-2 Microwave Digestion system
  • Discovery OHAUS Analytical Balance
  • Mettler A+460 Delta Range Analytical Balance
  • Sartorius 1204 MP Digital Balance
  • Rotovapor Butchi R-10 Autoclave 2840EL


  • Contherm Thermotec 2000 Oven
  • Eppendorf Centrifuge 5430
  • Eppendorf Centrifuge 5810
  • Chiltern Scientific Plataform Mixer
  • Ratek Plataform mixer
  • YSI Pro ODO optical dissolved oxygen meters
  • YSI Pro Plus field pH and conductivity meter
  • Hach 2100 Turbidmeter
  • Four Fumehoods

Key staff

Laboratory Manager

Laboratory Technician

Technical Manager and MPI Quarantine Imports