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DaphTox II Biomonitoring using Daphnia


Sensitive detection of toxic substances in water via computer-assisted digital image analysis

The bbe DaphTox II observes daphnids, commonly known as "water fleas", under the influence of constantly running sample water. Based on the Extended Dynamic Daphnia Test, bbe developed a new sensitive method to detect hazardous compounds in water from rivers (source-water protection), plants, distribution systems and production drains to preserve human health and to monitor water.

Sensitivity data are available below.

Sample water (0.5 - 2 l/h) continuously runs through the measuring chamber containing the daphnia. The live images obtained using a CCD-camera are evaluated online with an integrated PC to analyse changes in the behaviour of the daphnia. If the change is statistically significant, an alarm is triggered. The method of image analysis enables a series of measurement methods and plausibility tests to assess the daphnia's behaviour using different criteria.

Measurement using digital image analysis

Observation of speed parameters:

average speed

speed distribution

distance between daphnia

Observation of behaviour:

swimming height


fractal dimension: measurements for turns and circling movements, curviness

Observation of growth:

determination of daphnia size

Toxicity Index

The concept of the toxicity index is based on the evaluation of certain measurands, such as speed or height, and changes in these measurands. Only when 2 or more of the measurands simultaneously show unusual results within a fixed period of time does the DaphTox II trigger an alarm.


average swim speed

speed distribution

swim height

average distance

fractal dimension of paths: curviness, turns

no. of daphnia

distribution in chamber

size of daphnia

Measurement procedurevideo image analysis
Housing materialvarnished steel plate
Dimensions (H x W x D)800 x 800 x 500 m
Protection classIP54
Mains supply110/240V 50/60Hz
Power consumption600 W
TemperatureSample: 0 - 30 °C / Environment: 0 - 35° C
Transmissionsuitable for max. 100 FTU
Sample volume30 ml
Maintenance interval> 7 days
Sample inflowfree inflow/tube pump
Hardwareintegrated touchscreen PC, Windows XP Prof. splash-proof, flexible USB keyboard



analogue output 4-20 mA (2 X) (optional)

relay output (2 X)



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Tel: (852) 3690 1588   Fax: (852) 3690 1586
Email: Dianjiang_HK@yahoo.com.hk   Hongkong@Dianjiangtech.com
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