Environmental Fate and Metabolism

Environmental Fate and Metabolism

At AgroChemex our scientific team has many years’ experience conducting radiolabelled environmental fate and plant metabolism studies. The outdoor confined study system for plant metabolism and confined rotational studies is extensive. Compliance is key when working with radioactive materials and AgroChemex hold two certificates issued by the UK Environment Agency under the Radioactive Substances Act (1993).

The Certificate of Registration allows the holding of 10 Gbq of 14C. The Certificate of Authorisation licences the accumulation and disposal of radioactive waste, including the release of 14CO2. The team is well experienced in this area having worked with radio labelled compounds since 1990.

Field and Glasshouse Metabolism Studies

A unique container based study system has been developed for field based plant metabolism and confined rotation studies. Container-based cores are available each in it’s own plot designed to enable guard or companion crops to be established.

Micro-plot and confined glasshouse based systems are also utilised for plant metabolism work in line with protocol requirements. A set of six new glasshouses has been installed in 2015 to extend the capability for these studies.

Established perennial crops, such as vines and apples, can be utilised for radiolabelled studies. Bespoke designed application systems have been developed to mitigate the risk of environmental contamination.

A specific area of the farm is also set aside specifically for soil dissipation studies.

Strategic Partnership

To enable us to offer a more complete service we have established a Strategic Partnership with a number of analytical contract laboratories. Clients may provide their own radiolabelled materials and can specify alternative analysts.

Lysimeter Facility

At the Aldham’s Farm Research Station we currently have 14 undisturbed cores (0.5m2 x 1.2m deep) of BBA compliant loamy sand. These are connected via underground piping to a leachate collection pit. A further 12 cores are in reserve.

A specialist sprayer has been devised for the safe an accurate application of materials to the lysimeters. This was the basis for the sprayers developed for application to field metabolism, confined rotation and micro-plot tests.