Why analytics

Department of Analytics

Why do chemicals and drug residues get into our drinking water? How do natural substances influence the quality of our water? Which substances from cosmetics do humans take in and what does our body do with them? And how can you analyze all of this? What material properties must chemicals, pharmaceuticals, pesticides and nanomaterials have so that they do not pose a threat to humans or the environment? Which technologies can also be used to remove contaminants from water?

The analytics department at the Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research under the direction of Prof. Dr. Thorsten Reemtsma. It is our goal to develop and use innovative analytical methods and procedures in order to understand and predict the occurrence and behavior of contaminants in the environment and possible effects. This knowledge in turn helps to evaluate chemicals, to understand environmental processes and to further develop treatment technologies. The knowledge is also the basis for official, regulatory work on chemicals.

Our special analytical competence is to (1) develop quantitative methods of high precision and sensitivity for large numbers of samples and (2) always ask questions about the (previously) unknown substance, about transformation products or the chemical structure. We use our expertise to work together with partners in research, industry and authorities on solutions and processes that protect people and the environment from the harmful effects of contaminants.

Our work is divided into five main topics, which are reflected in the five working groups of the department.