das wasserhaus

Research Projects

Overall project:

SIGN2: Sino-German water supply Network - Clean water from the source to the tap

Subproject Hydroisotop:

COSIA: Compound Specific Isotope Analyses to Asses Eco-Chemical Risks for Lake Taihu in China


01.10.2017 - 31.03.2021


The emerging problems in the Taihu lake, caused by growing industrialization and
intensification of agriculture, are characteristic for many surface waters in China. Hence, theTaihu lake can serve as measure for the development and application of research methods and conceptual schemes to assess the eco-chemical risks.

The aims of the sub-project “Compound Specific Isotope Analyses to assess Eco-Chemical Risks for Lake Taihu in China” are to study the dynamic lakewater cycle, which affects the nutrient and pollutant contents and therefore the severity of eutrophication and degradation. In addition, the origin of nitrogen-bearing nutrients will be examined via isotope methods to yield a comprehension of interaction processes in combination with pollutant decomposition.

This will provide a basis for control and effective sanitation measures.

For the first time multielement isotope analyses of organic pollutants that are quality relevant should be performed. The investigations are planned on sediments and lake water in relevant nanogram concentration range. A mandatory requirement for the implementation of this objective is the development of a measuring method.

By the investigation of the isotopy of the organic pollutants from lake water (13C, 15N, 18O, 37Cl) and sediment (137Cs, 210Pb, 226Ra, 15N, 13C, 37Cl, 2H/18O), it is supposed to comprehend impact sources and changes in the Taihu lake on the nanogram- and sediment timescale. In this regard, specific secondary transformation processes have to be identified and considered by the particular studied isotopic composition.

In the proposed research-project, Hydroisotop GmbH is involved as project Partner in 5 work packages in close collaboration with Chinese and German Partners.

In detail, Hydroisotop targets the following sub-goals.

  1. Developement of a multielement isotope method for selected organic pollutants in nanoscale range
  2. Origin assignment and transformation process of nutrient and specific organic pollutants by component specific C/N/O/Cl-isotope signatrue (source, Transport degradation)
  3. Examintation of lake water dynamics by H/O-isotope composition (climatic effects, technological interventions)
  4. The investigation of sediment/lake water interaction by N/H/O/Cl-isotope
    composition of the sediment and sediment porewater (transformation processes,mineralization), and sediment dating by Cs/Ra/Pb-isotopes