Hand-Held System for On-Site Trihalomethane Measurement

Period of Performance: 01/25/2008 - 10/22/2008


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Scribner Assoc., Inc.
150 E. Connecticut Ave
Southern Pines, NC 28387
Principal Investigator


There is an immediate need for a rapid, portable detection system for carcinogenic Trihalomethanes in drinking water. A handheld total Trihalomethane sensor system would permit water system operators to identify and implement mitigation strategies to the contamination source avoiding costly regulatory violations. The aim of the proposed work is to develop an electrochemical-based sensor array system and measurement method procedure for rapid, accurate determination of the total Trihalomethane content of drinking water. The proposed electrochemical approach is well-suited to accurate quantification of part per billion-level analytes; electrochemical-based sensor array systems are ideal for portable applications because they are easily miniaturized without sacrificing performance, are low power which facilitates battery operation, and are inherently safe. High-density sensor arrays permit redundant analysis for enhanced measurement fidelity as well as targeted detection of multiple analytes without sacrificing cost or portability. The Phase I will demonstrate the technical feasibility of the proposed electroanalytical approach and the efficacy of developing small, low mass and power analytical instrumentation for the sensor array. Using results from the Phase I, the expected performance of the detection system will be critically evaluated against established performance criteria. In Phase II, the research team will develop a prototype handheld detection system.