GroundTruth Consulting shines a light!

2 November 2011

Simplicity of the BenthoTorch measurement (Source: bbe Moldaenke)

Dr Mark Graham, well-known river ecologist from GroundTruth Consulting in Pietermaritzburg, has acquired the revolutionary new BenthoTorch.  The BenthoTorch, made by bbe Moldaenke of Germany and represented in South Africa by DH Environmental, can measure and distinguish the chlorophyll signatures of green, diatom and cyanobacterial algae in a single measurement.

This technology is a major advance for the routine and specialized screening of river environments, via the periphyton – algae that grow on the rocks and stones.  The torch is simply placed against the rock, the measurement made and an instant recording is made of the total and individual chlorophyll amounts per unit of area (microgrammes per square centimeter).  The GPS position of the measurement is logged simultaneously.

Previous methods required the laborious scraping of material from a rock and undertaking laboratory analysis of the extracted chlorophyll.  Now, the BenthoTorch changes all this by facilitating in situ measurements of the three major algal divisions, off living cells!

 

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