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Phycocyanin measurement instruments

Cyanobacteria (or blue-green algae) are photosynthetic bacteria that occur naturally in surface waters.  Under certain conditions of light, temperature and nutrient levels cyanobacteria can multiply rapidly, forming a bloom.

Some Cyanobacteria produce toxins which pose health risks for humans and animals.  The EU Bathing Waters Directive, therefore, requires monitoring for these blue-green algae blooms.

Testing for the actual toxins is possible by means of laboratory analysis of water samples, but this can be costly and time-consuming.  However, cyanobacteria contain a fluorescent pigment called Phycocyanin, which can be detected in real-time using a Valeport Hyperion fluorometer.

The Hyperion uses narrow bandpass filters on both excitation and emission wavelengths to ensure that the response is specific to Phycocyanin measurement and not affected by false-positive results from normal Chlorophyll a fluorescence.