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Ground and Surface Water

Surface water is the largest source of fresh water used for human consumption. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) implemented the National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program in 1991 to develop long-term data on streams, rivers, groundwater, and aquatic systems. The data support national, regional, state, and local policies and decisions related to water-quality management. The NAWQA program is designed to answer the following questions:

  • What is the condition of our nation's streams, rivers, and groundwater?
  • How are these conditions changing over time?
  • How do natural features and human activities affect these conditions, and where are those effects most pronounced?

Dionex has co-developed several methods with the US EPA Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water. This collaboration has strengthened with the development of unique technology including electrolytic suppression, Reagent-Free™ IC (RFIC™), with Eluent Generation or Eluent Regeneration.


The analysis of common anions in environmental water samples is among the most frequently used applications of Dionex ion chromatographs systems.


Perchlorate (ClO4) has attracted attention within the environmental community as a potentially regulated contaminant, due to concerns that it interferes with iodide uptake in the human thyroid.


A key Dionex ion-exchange application is the determination of dissolved alkali and alkaline earth metals and ammonia in drinking water.

Selenium and Arsenic

Arsenic is ubiquitous in the environment in the form of inorganic and organic compounds in the trivalent and pentavalent states. Ion chromatography (IC) can separate these metal species according to their valence states.

Cyanide and Metal Cyanide

Cyanide is a regulated inorganic contaminant in drinking and bottled water in the U.S., as enforced by the U.S. EPA and the U.S. FDA Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN). 

Pesticides and Herbicides

Pesticides are regulated because the benefits of their use are balanced by the potential risks to human health and the environment due to their toxicity, potency, and persistence in the environment. 


Metals play an instrumental role in almost every facet of our lives, but, when used or disposed of incorrectly, metals can become serious contaminants in soil and water.

Uranium and Thorium

The determination of uranium and thorium can be complicated due interferences present in the sample matrix.

Acid Rain

Ion chromatography (IC) offers selective and rapid determination of low anion concentrations in acid rain.

Emerging Contaminants

Dionex works with drinking water utilities and research organizations to develop robust analytical methods for the detection of emerging contaminants in the environment.