Portable analyzer for on-site determination of dissolved organic carbon—development and field testing


P. Lochyński, H. Börnick, T. Dittmar, P. Fremdling, H. Glorian, V. Schmalz, E. Worch, Portable analyzer for on-site determination of dissolved organic carbon—development and field testing, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 15 (11), (2018) -. doi:10.3390/ijerph15112335
Lochyński P., Börnick H., Dittmar T., Fremdling P., Glorian H., Schmalz V., Worch E.,


Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) is a sum parameter that is frequently used in water analytics. Highly resolved and accurate DOC data are necessary, for instance, for water quality monitoring and for the evaluation of the efficiency of treatment processes. The conventional DOC determination methods consist of on-site sampling and subsequent analysis in a stationary device in a laboratory. However, especially in regions where no or only poorly equipped laboratories are available, this method bears the risk of getting erroneous results. For this reason, the objective of the present study was to set up a reliable and portable DOC analyzer for on-site analysis. The presented DOC system is equipped with an electrolysis-based decomposition cell with boron-doped diamond electrodes (BDD) that oxidizes the organic compounds to carbon dioxide. Within this study, the influence of different electrode materials and the composition of the applied electrolytes on the DOC decomposition in an undivided electrolytic cell were systematically investigated. Furthermore, some technical aspects of the portable prototype are discussed. After a detailed validation, the prototype was used in an ongoing monitoring program in Northern India. The limit of detection is 0.1 mg L-1 C with a relative standard deviation of 2.3% in a linear range up to 1000 mg L C-1. The key features of the portable DOC analyzer are: No need for ultra-pure gases, catalysts or burning technology, an analyzing time per sample below 5 min, and a reliable on-site DOC determination.





The Faculty of Environmental Engineering and Geodesy

Institute of Environmental Engineering

Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences

pl. Grunwaldzki 24,
50-363 Wrocław

Project assumptions

The overall goal of the project is to develop an innovative multifactor mathematical model enabling monitoring of bath contamination used in the electropolishing process of austenitic stainless steels. This model will allow optimization and reduction of process costs and will have an impact on reducing environmental pollution during electrolytic polishing of austenitic stainless steels.

The final outcome of the project will consist in the development of a method of monitoring the gradual contamination of the electropolishing bath.


The team deals with research in the field of electrochemistry, wastewater treatment, monitoring and optimization of processes in laboratory and industrial conditions. The diverse experience of individual members of the IonsMonit team is its strength.



Project: “A pioneering model for monitoring pollution of electropolishing process baths (IonsMonit)” financed by the National Center for Research and Development as part of the Lider programme.