Biosensor for Field Monitoring of Pesticides in Water

EPA Contract Number: EPD05025
Title: Biosensor for Field Monitoring of Pesticides in Water
Investigators: Carter, Michael T.
Small Business: Eltron Research & Development Inc.
EPA Contact: Richards, April
Phase: I
Project Period: March 1, 2005 through August 31, 2005
Project Amount: $69,999
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (2005) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , Watersheds , SBIR - Water and Wastewater


This research project involves the development of a portable, low-powered amperometric biosensor for the detection of organophosphorus and carbamate insecticides in water. Eltron Research, Inc., will design a renewable, robust biosensor to specifically detect insecticides based on an immobilized enzyme on a sensor electrode. This method will allow for the analysis of insecticides in water without significant dilution or reduction in the sensitivity of the detected species. The miniaturized biosensor will use modified, screen-printed microelectrodes, which will enhance the sensitivity and the limit of detection of the device.

The sensor will be applicable to real-time, onsite monitoring of insecticide concentrations in fresh water, and will offer a cost-effective solution to screening potentially contaminated water sites. Biosensors will facilitate environmental monitoring of water supplies. Water supplies need to be monitored for pesticide pollution because these toxic compounds are used extensively in agricultural crop production. Potential pollution output includes runoff and leaching of unused or misapplied pesticides and chemical air emissions from spray drift. Pesticide use in urban areas of the United States has undergone major changes during the past several decades. The growth of suburban areas, the rise of the lawn care industry, and the development of new herbicides and insecticides have increased the use of pesticides. The professional application industry includes uses for lawn care, tree care, and treatment of structures.

Supplemental Keywords:

small business, SBIR, amperometric biosensor, organophosphorus insecticide, carbamate insecticide, sensor electrode, environmental monitoring, contaminated water sites, water supplies, pesticide pollution, herbicides, chemical air emissions, EPA, RFA, Scientific Discipline, Air, Toxics, ECOSYSTEMS, Ecosystem Protection/Environmental Exposure & Risk, PESTICIDES, Environmental Chemistry, Chemistry, Monitoring/Modeling, Environmental Monitoring, Agroecosystems, Engineering, Engineering, Chemistry, & Physics, Environmental Engineering, Pesticide Types, neurotoxic, amperometric, field monitoring, biosensing system, insecticides, agriculture, organophosphorus hydrolase, herbicides, biosensors, biosensor, organophosphate pesticides

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final
  • SBIR Phase II:

    Biosensor for Field Monitoring of Pesticides in Water  | Final Report