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New equipment for Scientific Services will help the City's Water Strategy<p>​The City’s Scientific Services Branch is a world-class facility that is at the forefront of water and air quality research. The facility boasts a team of highly qualified scientists who are well-equipped to monitor and assess the efficacy of water and wastewater treatment across Cape Town. <br></p><p><img src="" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:321px;" /><br></p><div>Over the past few years, the City invested more than R30 million in laboratory equipment. This includes instrumentation capable of analysing metals, cyanides, total organic carbon and disinfection by-products among others, in all of the various water matrixes. The equipment purchased also enables industrial effluent fingerprinting and waterborne pathogen identification. <br></div><div><br></div><div>The City is also in the process of upgrading its Laboratory Information Management System to the latest version. This will enable Scientific Services to timeously capture and report analytical results to various branches within the City seamlessly. </div><div><img src="" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:320px;" /><br></div><div>‘Scientific Services now has the capability to produce even more extensive and comprehensive data sets, which will support the directorate in planning and directing resources more effectively, paving the way for greater water resilience,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Sanitation, Councillor Zahid Badroodien.</div><div><br></div><div>In an effort to keep abreast of the latest technology and testing requirements the City made a R13 million investment into its laboratories for the 2023/2024 financial year, with two new innovative multi-function additions: </div><div><br></div><div>1. Liquid Chromatography Mass Spectrophotometry (LC-MS/MS)</div><div><br></div><div>The total cost of the LC-MS/MS was approximately R7 million and is used to detect the presence of extremely low levels of toxins in water bodies such as dams, rivers and vleis. These toxins are often caused by algal blooms, which occurs when toxin-producing algae grow excessively in a body of water.  </div><div><br></div><div>The LC-MS/MS can also identify very small concentrations of harmful chemicals referred to as chemicals of emerging concern that include chemicals used in medication, personal care products and industrial processes and is harmful to humans. </div><div><br></div><div>2. Gas Chromatography Time of Flight Mass Spectrometer (GCxGC-TOFMS)</div><div><br></div><div>The R6 million GCxGC-TOFMS is also used for the analysis of chemicals present in extremely low concentrations in water matrixes. It comes with an automated robotic sampler which is capable of preparing samples prior to analysis. </div><div><br></div><div>Both instruments are capable of detecting trace levels of chemical compounds. The equipment is able to precisely detect a single drop of a toxin in a body of water which is the size of 20 Olympic swimming pools.  </div><div><br></div><div>‘This new LC-MS/MS and GCxGC-TOFMS equipment will greatly contribute to build skills and capacity to support the City’s Water Strategy and new water programme, especially as the City is currently exploring water re-use which is expected to add 7% to Cape Town’s supply by 2040,’ said Councillor Badroodien.<br></div><div><br></div><div><strong>End</strong><br></div>2024-01-18T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#b1001203-6617-4993-8107-4871a2e6aa24;L0|#0b1001203-6617-4993-8107-4871a2e6aa24|scientific services;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#424fbb2f-e27c-44db-b853-dbbdb893d37a;L0|#0424fbb2f-e27c-44db-b853-dbbdb893d37a|Water;GP0|#352cb5da-6a34-4bf4-959d-14dc8987a2b4;L0|#0352cb5da-6a34-4bf4-959d-14dc8987a2b4|water and sanitation10

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