WaterTagging: DNA micro particles for tracing and modelling water flows

Themes: Water & Maritime

Late lab scale demonstration

A TRL is a measure to indicate the matureness of a developing technology. When an innovative idea is discovered it is often not directly suitable for application. Usually such novel idea is subjected to further experimentation, testing and prototyping before it can be implemented. The image below shows how to read TRL’s to categorise the innovative ideas.

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Being able to follow and quantify water flow paths is of key importance for pollution studies and water flow analysis. There is a need for environmental friendly technologies for this with increased spatial and temporal coverage.


Micro particles with DNA-tags are proposed as solution, because they are detectable in extremely low concentrations and can be coded in innumerable ways while keeping identical particle properties.


We are currently working on tailoring the particles. The next step is to develop protocols for application into surface and subsurface water systems. Widespread application is foreseen within years.

Dr. Thom Bogaard


Dr. Jan-Willem Foppen

Dr. Sulalit Bandyopadhyay