CAChE Nutrient Analysis Core Facility

The CAChE Nutrient Analysis Core Facility represents three distinct services and opportunities through its related but distinct spaces at Florida International University; first, it serves as a NELAC-accredited nutrient analysis laboratory to directly support research; second, it contains a dedicated student area for education and training related to traditional water quality analyses; and finally, it provides a space where students and faculty can work to improve or innovate technologies, and develop alternative or novel techniques, including the use of liquid, gas and ion Chromatography.

The recharge facility of the CAChE Nutrient Analysis Core Facility, or “Core Lab,” provides NELAC-certified analyses of dissolved and total nutrients, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), total organic carbon (TOC) and chlorophyll-a in fresh/salt waters and total P in solids and tissue samples. Additional, non-certified analyses include total N and C, salinity, pH, dissolved oxygen, temperature, turbidity, etc. The CAChE Nutrient Analysis Core Lab currently serves FIU faculty and federal and government agencies, such as Monroe and Broward County, SFWMD, FDEPA, USEPA, etc. Its primary equipment includes spectrophotometers, nutrient analyzers, C/N elemental analyzers, total N analyzers, TOC analyzers, ultrafiltration units, scintillation counters, etc.

The SERC Laboratory's personnel, procedures, equipment, facilities, and quality system are in compliance with the requirements of FAC Rule 64E-1 and the 2009 NELAC Standards.

Examples of equipment and capabilities are shown below:
  • GC coupled with FID/ECD/TCD detectors for the analyses of common and greenhouse gases.
  • HPLC-PDS for pigment separation and analysis
  • IC to detect anions and cations in surface waters and wastewaters
  • Nanodrop Scanning Spectrofluorometer for the measurement of fluorescent organic matter (FOM), algal pigments and environmental tracers.
  • UV-Vis spectrophotometer for colorimetric water quality and measurements of optical properties for natural waters.