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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract -

Application of a Hollow-Fiber, Tangential-Flow Device for Sampling Suspended Bacteria and Particles from Natural Waters


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 19 No. 3, p. 625-629
    Received: Aug 1, 1989

    * Corresponding author(s):
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  1. James S. Kuwabara and
  2. Ronald W. Harvey
  1. U.S. Geological Survey, 345 Middlefield Road, Mail Stop 465, Menlo Park, CA 94025.



The design and application of a hollow-fiber tangential-flow filtration device has been used to concentrate bacteria and suspended particles from large volume surface water and groundwater samples (i.e., hundreds of liters). Filtrate tlux rates (4–8 L min−1) are equal to or faster than those of other devices that are based on continuous flow centrifugation and plate and frame filtration. Particle recovery efficiencies for inorganic particles (approximately 90%) were similar to other dewatering devices, but microbial cell recoveries (30–90%) were greatly improved by this technique relative to other currently available methods. Although requirements for operation and maintenance of the device are minimal, its size, as with other dewatering devices, limits its applicability at remote sample sites. Nevertheless, it has proven useful for sample collection in studies involving microbial transport and analysis of particle-associated trace inorganic solutes.

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