Modern Water Toxicity Products

Toxicity large1

Toxicity testing using bioluminescent bacteria have been in use for over 30 years and their capability in detecting toxic substances, which include heavy metal toxicity, general water toxicity and microbial toxicity,  is well understood and documented.  Certain heavy metals such as cadmium, arsenic, magnesium, lead, manganese, iron, copper, to name but a few, must be monitored on a continuous basis as stipulated by local governmental regulations.  Iron & Uranium is especially prevalent where Acid Mine Drainage (AMD) is of concern.  These heavy metals add to the toxicity levels in water and will be detected by performing toxicity testing or screening test.  Basic toxicity screening test can be performed using our Analyser system, which are sensitive to over 2700 substances.  Acute toxicity tests and ATP testing can be performed on our range of Analyser systems.

Certain strains of bacteria emit light when healthy. When they are exposed to toxic substances, which could be chemical or microbial in nature, the amount of light emitted reduces. The greater the toxicity of the sample, the lower the light emitted. Measuring changes in light between healthy bacteria and bacteria exposed to toxic substances will therefore indicate the presence of a toxin in a water sample.

Our Microtox® M500 toxicity test system is the industry standard, and EPA approved, for laboratory-based rapid toxicity screening and acute toxicity testing.  The DeltaTox® II is the portable version of the M500 and can also perform screening and acute toxicity testing. Modern Water’s new Microtox® CTM is a On-Line, broad range Continuous Toxicity Monitor (CTM).

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Applications include: 

  • Petro Drilling
  • Contaminated soil
  • Drinking water monitoring
  • Ecotoxicology
  • Hazardous waste
  • Industrial effluent
  • Industrial process water
  • Marine water
  • Medical/Pharmaceutical products
  • Mining wastes, soil and water
  • Municipal effluent
  • Personal care/Household
  • Chemicals
  • Recreational water
  • Sediments
  • Solid phase materials
  • Storm water
  • Deliberate and accidental contamination events
  • Potable water at point of use or in the distribution network
  • Monitoring of rivers, lake, reservoirs, seawater, groundwater/natural attenuation

The Microtox® Model 500 (M500) Analyser system is the gold standard in toxicity analysis.  This laboratory-based, temperature-controlled, self-calibrating photometer measures acute toxicity and is ISO certified. 

Microtox® M500 is a biosensor-based measurement system that uses bioluminescence technology to monitor for either accidental or deliberate contamination of both water supplies and waste water. Heavy metals like Cadmium, Lead, Copper, Manganese, Iron, Selenium etc add to the toxicity levels in water.  Substances like fluoride, cyanide etc can also be detected using basic toxicity screening tests. With over 2,900 instruments sold worldwide, the Microtox® toxicity test system is the industry standard for rapid toxicity screening and analysis.  DeltaTox® II is the portable toxicity analyser used with the Microtox® technology.

Microtox® rapid toxicity detection is an in vitro test system that uses bioluminescent bacteria for the detection of toxicity in water and is used as a screening system to detect the relative toxicity of a sample. Applications include the testing of samples containing biological toxins, industrial effluent, industrial process waters, municipal effluent, drinking water eco toxicological samples, hazardous waste, soil, sediments, storm water and medical products for bio reactivity.

For a full list of scientific papers written about our Microtox® technology visit the white papers section of our website. 

Key features: 

  • Test sensitive to more than 2,700 different simple and complex chemicals
  • Results available in as little as 15 minutes*
  • Cost effective and easy to perform tests
  • More than 2,900 instruments sold worldwide

DeltaTox® II is a simple, rapid, extremely responsive, portable water quality test system.  We are also introducing the NEW Microtox FX portable / laboratory toxicity and bio-contaminant Analyser system.  Both systems offer high sensitivity and rapid testing to detect pathogens and toxic chemicals.

Designed for acute toxicity screening and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) testing, DeltaTox® II and Microtox FX systems use bioluminescence technology to screen for contamination in instances of drinking water emergencies and chemical spills into water systems. Both Analyser systems are portable / laboratory toxicity analysers used with the well proven Microtox® technology.

The DeltaTox® II and Microtox FX instruments both have adetection capability that provides a very sensitive and rapid test to detect two of the most probable classes of agents, pathogens and toxic chemicals that may accidently or intentionally contaminate drinking water or wastewater. DeltaTox® II’s and Microtox FX's acute toxicity and ATP detection capabilities make it the ideal instrument for rapidly and accurately assessing if the quality of drinking water, from the source to the tap, has been affected by an incident.

Key features: 

  • Test sensitive to more than 2,700 different simple and complex chemicals
  • Results available in 5 minutes*
  • Excellent correlation with HPC methods
  • Cost effective
  • Fully portable
  • Manufactured in a certified ISO 13485 quality system with 100% lot traceability
  • 2nd Generation ATP kits are also available offering greater sensitivity

*after initial reagent preparation




Microtox FX

Microtox FX


Size:  20cm x 18cm x 10cm

Weight: 1 kg

Power:  Self contained Lithium ion battery or universal power adapter

Dynamic Range: 1 to 60 million counts (approx)

Display Output: Backlit LCD - 8 lines x 20 characters

Data I/O:  Standard Serial USB for data transfer and firmware updates

Toxicity Reagent:  Freeze dried luminescent bacteria (Vibrio Fisheri)


Modern Water’s new* Microtox® CTM is a site-based, broad range, Continuous Toxicity Monitor (CTM). It continuously measures the chemical toxicity of a water source, giving instant indication of water health.

Microtox® CTM is a fully automatic instrument that offers a 4-week, autonomous operating cycle and requires a low level of skill for both operation and maintenance.

Microtox® CTM makes fully automatic, continuous, on-line testing a reality. It has broad range detection capabilities that provide rapid early warning of contamination by several thousand known chemicals. This enables containment measures to be actioned in time to protect against serious contamination events.

A major advantage over most analytical methods is that Microtox® CTM is able to detect contaminants whether or not there is prior knowledge of the potential source or nature of contamination. Other on-line toxicity monitors take intermittent samples and provide only one test result in typically 15-30 minutes. This means that brief events may be missed and leads to a high incidence of false alarms. Microtox® CTM takes two measurements per second, significantly reducing the risk of false alarms.

Key Features:

  • Real-time and truly continuous monitoring
  • 4-week, autonomous operating cycle
  • No manual intervention except for monthly maintenance
  • Automatic diagnosis of system faults
  • Remote control, data analysis and troubleshooting
  • Detects thousands of chemical compounds with lower levels of detection than most other biosensor systems
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