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Environmental Health - Toxic Substances

Photo Gallery

Emerging Contaminants in the Environment

An accelerated solvent extractor used to process soil samples.
An accelerated solvent extractor used to process soil samples for the determination of pesticides and pharmaceuticals in soil. USGS scientists have developed or adapted methods to measure emerging contaminants in sediment samples using a variety of gas chromatography/mass spectrometry and liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry analytical techniques.

USGS scientists using an automated accelerated solvents extractor to prepare soil samples.
USGS scientists use an automated accelerated solvents extractor to prepare soil samples from a confined animal feeding operation for analysis of antibiotics.

A liquid chromatograph coupled to a triple-quadrupole mass spectrometer (LC/MS/MS).
A liquid chromatograph coupled to a triple-quadrupole mass spectrometer (LC/MS/MS) that is used for the quantitative analysis of polar organic molecules, such as pesticides and pharmaceuticals.

A scientist operating a liquid chromatograph coupled to a triple-quadrupole mass spectrometer.
USGS scientists analyze water samples for pharmaceuticals at environmentally relevant concentrations with an LC/MS/MS instrument capable of detecting ultra-trace concentrations.

The results of a polymerase chain reaction gene detection test. White bands are  individual genes.
The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is one of several types of DNA-based methods used to detect genes (white bands in this picture) in bacteria. This method and others are being used to study the occurrence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and microbial contaminants.

Hogs in pens inside a hog production facility.
Emerging contaminants can originate from a variety of animal- and human-waste sources such as this hog production facility.

Processing tanks at a wastewater treatment plant.
Emerging contaminants can originate from a variety of animal- and human-waste sources such as this wastewater treatment plant.

Wastewater discharge in Arizona.
Wastewater discharges, such as this one in Arizona, were sampled by USGS scientists as part of a study of the persistence of selected emerging contaminants in streams receiving wastewater effluent.

A line of cows in a confined animal feeding operation, New York.
USGS scientists sampled manures from confined animal feeding operations, such as this one in New York, as part of the Source Characterization Study.

A chicken house in Ohio.
Manures from confined animal feeding operations, such as this chicken house in Ohio, were sampled as part of the Source Characterization Study for Emerging Contaminants Project.

USGS field technicians collecting a sample from a sewer.
USGS field technicians retrieved samples from sewers for analysis of emerging contaminants as part of the Source Characterization Study for Emerging Contaminants Project.

A map of the United States that shows sampling locations.
The USGS conducted a study to determine the persistence of selected emerging contaminants in streams receiving wastewater effluent.

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Page Last Modified: Friday, 10-Jan-2014 11:10:49 EST