New test could help improve SA’s water quality

A portable device that can detect the presence of E. coli in water has been developed by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

The ColiSpot aims to provide waste water treatment facilities with results in one day, as opposed to traditional tests transported to laboratories, with results available only 3 to 5 days later.

Researcher Shavon Kumar says the device takes up to six hours.

ColiSPot is much like the home pregnancy test, a water sample is filtered through a membrane and this membrane is then placed in a petri dish which contains nutrients and this then promotes growth of bacteria.

Shavon Kumar, researcher at CSIR

After six hours one can test for the presence of E.coli.

Shavon Kumar, researcher at CSIR

So like the pregnancy test the test would should two red lines if E.coli is present.

Shavon Kumar, researcher at CSIR

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