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Modern Water Toxicity Products

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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

Laboratory Microtox LX Analyser system

The NEW Microtox LX is the new generation of laboratory based acute toxicity Analyser systems.  The new Analyser blends Modern Water's proven M500 technology with improved features to simplify testing in demanding drinking, industrial and wastewater applications. 

Microtox LX picture

Key Features

  • Biological early warning system sensitive to more than 2,700 simple and complex chemicals allows for the protection of drinking water supplies from accidental or deliberate contamination.
  • Test results correlate highly with other widely accepted toxicity test methods and helps to ensure compliance with regulatory and effluent permit standards in wastewater applications. 
  • Proven - Numerous independent scientific studies have documented Microtox's performance as an effective toxicity screening tool in a wide array of applications.
  • Increased Sensitivity - The use of a new proprietary, fully dynamic photomultiplier increases the sensitivity of the instrument. 
  • Fast, Reliable and Reproducible Results - Results are available in as lilttle as 15 minutes after intial sample preparation. 
  • Actively cooled sample and read wells enable more precise and consistent readings. 
  • Automatic colour correction feature adjusts test results based on the sample's turbidity. 
  • Cost effective - A low cost toxicity test that requires small sample volumes. 
  • Manufactured in a certified ISO 13485 quality system with 100% lot traceability. 

LX Features


How Microtox Technology Delivers Rapid and Highly Accurate Results

Biological monitoring techniques are playing an increasingly important role in the evaluation of acute toxicity.  Biosensors using bioluminescent bacterial have been in use for over 30 years.  Modern Water developed the Microtox technology to address the limitations of conventional bioassay toxicity analysis.  Due to the simplicity, speed, economics, convenience and reproducibility. 

The Microtox system uses a proprietary strain of bioluminescent bacteria, Aliivibrio fischeri.  Upon exposure to a sample containing toxic materials, changes in the bacteria's light output are measured by the Microtox LX's luminometer.  The greater the reduction in light emitted by the bacteria, the greater the toxicity of the sample. 

For further product information or information on the test protocols, please contact us

Portable / Laboratory Toxicity Monitoring DeltatoxII and Microtox FX

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)


Toxicity Monitor Microtox® CTM

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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