ENPHO Lab

About Enpho Lab

Background

Ever increasing use of synthetic chemicals in various products such as cosmetics, household appliances, food & beverage additives, electronics, agricultural products and unsafe disposal of these materials onto the environment have severely polluted the environment including water resources.  In addition, unplanned and rapid urbanization has been putting tremendous pressure in proper provision of safe drinking water, improved sanitation facilities and sustainable waste/wastewater management particularly in developing countries. Every year, thousands tons of wastewater including industrial effluents with toxic substances are disposed of untreated and haphazardly into the water bodies. As a result, millions of people are dying because of water borne and environment related diseases. To address these problems, appropriate strategies and management plans should be formulated based on the local conditions and need. Hence, in order to formulate these strategies, analytical services for detecting and quantifying chemical and microbiological contaminants is very much needed.

ENPHO Laboratory

Since its establishment in 1990, Environment and Public Health Organization (ENPHO) laboratory has been providing analytical services on water, wastewater, air, soil, compost, food and recently in faecal sludge analysis. ENPHO laboratory has been accredited under the NEPLAS criteria (based on ISO 17025) by Nepal Bureau of Standards and Metrology (NBSM), Government of Nepal since 2057 BS. The main objective of ENPHO laboratory, through its services, is to contribute to ENPHO’s overall vision of creating healthy and eco-friendly society. Besides, ENPHO laboratory has established itself as an important platform for research and development activities in the sector of water, sanitation and environment.

Services:

  • Drinking water sampling and analysis
  • Surface and ground water quality analysis
  • Wastewater sampling and analysis
  • Faecal sludge sampling and analysis
  • Soil, compost, food analysis
  • Research and development in environmental technologies

Trainings:

  • Water sample collection and preservation technique
  • Water quality testing in field and in laboratory
  • Microbial water quality monitoring and testing in field
  • ENPHO Water test kit training
  • Mini-lab establishment training

 

Other Features:

  • We use software based laboratory information management system for computerized data storage and report generation.
  • We are developing mobile based app to receive your orders and deliver water quality testing service at your doorstep.
  • We also provide sample bottles for sample collection with necessary treatment and preservatives as required by standard methods.
  • We also provide water collection services.

Products developed at ENPHO lab:

  • Piyush Plus – 0.7% chlorine solution for water disinfection
  • Piyush – 0.5% chlorine solution for water disinfection
  • Chlorine solution (1%)
  • ENPHO Water Field Test Kit (10 parameters)
  • ENPHO Arsenic Field Test Kit
  • Free Residual Chlorine Test Kit
  • H2S producing Coliform Presence/Absence Test Vial
  • E. coli and Coliform test vial (ECC) vial
  • Swachha Colloidal Silver Filter

Research at ENPHO lab:

ENPHO Laboratory’s persistent efforts to contribute to a healthier and sustainable future can be reflected through a variety of its research and development activities on:

  • Study on alum dosing for water treatment in emergencies
  • Water quality testing in earthquake affected districts
  • Study on microbial quality in western Nepal
  • Study on efficiency of ceramic candle filters
  • Bacteriological water quality at street food vendors
  • Trend of groundwater quality of kathmandu valley 2010-2015
  • Characterization of wastewater in Nepal
  • Human urine application in rice and potato production
  • Rapid assessment of rainwater quality in Kathmandu Valley
  • Study on bacteria removal efficiency of different handwashing materials and techniques
  • Shelf -life study of Piyush and Piyush Plus
  • Report on study of effectiveness of sanitizer developed at ENPHO Laboratory
  • Development and validation of ECC vial for simultaneous detection of coliform and E. Coli in drinking water samples
  • Wastewater analysis of small-scale sanitation systems of Nepal
  • Water quality monitoring of different water supply schemes

Milestones

  • Pioneered in bringing public awareness on air and water quality monitoring in Nepal.
  • Introduced arsenic testing and water quality testing field kits for the first time in Nepal.
  • Vital contribution in research and development of Kanchan Arsenic Filter - a simple amd effective arsenic filter at household level.
  • Developed Coliform Presence/Absence and E. coli and coliform testing (ECC) vial.
  • Carried out water quality testing in all 77 districts of Nepal.

Resources

ENPHO laboratory is situated in its own premises at Thapagaon, New Baneshwor in Kathmandu, and occupies an area of around 2000 sq. ft. ENPHO laboratory is equipped with sophisticated instruments like Atomic Absorption Spectrometer (AAS), UV-spectrometer, distillation, digestion units, distilled water production unit, incubators, ovens and field test kits. A competent team comprising chemists, microbiologists, environmental scientists and chemists are involved in sampling, laboratory analysis & measurement, quality control and project design & implementation at ENPHO Lab.

Instruments

ENPHO lab is equipped with many sophisticated analytical Instruments which are as stated below:

  1. pH and Electrical Conductivity Meters
  2. UV Spectrophotometer
  3. Digestion Unit (COD, Total Nitrogen)
  4. Distillation Unit
  5. Instruments for Microbiological Analysis
  6. Laminar Flow Cabinet for Microbiological Analysis
  7. Atomic Absorption Spectrometer
  8. 4-digit Analytical Balance
  9. Double Distillation Unit for Distilled Water Production
  10. Autoclave
  11. Oven and
  12. Incubators

We analyse samples from different kinds of sources like tap, ground water, drinking water treatment systems, swimming pool, surface waters (springs and streams), domestic sewage, industrial effluents, institutional wastewater, wastewater treatment plants, fecal sludge treatment plant, bottled water, hospitals, pharmaceutical industries and many more.

 

For more accurate results especially for research purposes or designing treatment systems, water needs to be tested in a fully competent and accredited laboratory.

Test Parameters

The following table lists the major parameters and sample category tested in ENPHO laboratory:

Drinking Water Waste Water Sludge
Orthophosphorus Potassium Total and faecal coliform (MPN)
Oil and Grease Phenol Temperature
Odor pH Sludge Volume Index
Nitrite Null Null
Nitrogen-Nitrate Total Phosphorus Selenium
Nitrogen-Nitrate Total Phosphate Silver
Nitrate Orthophosphorus Potassium
Nickel Oil and Grease Phenol
Mercury Nitrogen-Nitrite pH
Manganese Nitrogen-Nitrate Total Phosphate
Magnesium Nitrite Total Phosphorus
Lead Nitrate Orthophosphorus
Iron Nickel Nitrogen-Nitrite
Hexavalent chromium Water content Nitrogen-Nitrate
Helminthes Mercury Nitrite
Free Residual Chlorine Manganese Nitrate
Fluoride Lead Water content
Faecal coliform (MF) Iron Water content
Faecal coliform (MPN) Hexavalent chromium Mercury
Electrical Conductivity Helminthes Manganese
Dissolved Oxygen Fluoride Lead
Cyanide* Faecal coliform (MPN) Iron
Copper Faecal coliform (MF) Helminthes
Coliform Presence/Absence (H2S producing) Electrical Conductivity Faecal coliform (MPN)
Colour Dissolved Oxygen Faecal coliform (MF)
Chemical Oxygen Demand Copper Electrical Conductivity
Cobalt Colour Copper
Chloride Chemical Oxygen Demand Chemical Oxygen Demand
Calcium Cobalt Cobalt
Cadmium Chloride Chloride
Arsenic Biological Oxygen Demand Biological Oxygen Demand
Nitrogen-Ammonia Arsenic Arsenic
Ammonia Nitrogen-Ammonia Nitrogen-Ammonia
Aluminum Ammonia Ammonia

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)!

Water that looks clean and clear may not be actually safe and may contain harmful microorganisms that are invisible to the naked eye. Besides microbes, chemical contaminants can also exist in water which can pose acute or chronic health risks if used continuously for longer periods. Therefore, it is important to characterize the water and identify the contaminants in order to treat it to a satisfactory level. Even the water not used for drinking purpose needs to be tested because elements like iron, manganese, hardness etc. are associated with damage and discoloration of the clothes, kitchen and industrial appliances and plumbing fixtures.

 

At ENPHO, water testing can be carried out for various purposes.

Some are as follows:

  • To test the quality of the drinking water
  • To assess the efficiency of the treatment systems
  • To test the quality of bottled water
  • To test water quality of swimming pool
  • To test the quality of water used for pharmaceutical purposes and

many more…

 

Wastewaters are tested in order to characterize them to

  • check if effluent quality meet the national guidelines and standards
  • design wastewater treatment systems as many wastewater treatment designs often fail due to lack of data on quality of the wastewater to be treated
  • test the working efficiency of the existing treatment
  • track changes over time/ monitoring

The parameters to be tested depend upon the purpose of the test.

For example for drinking purpose, health related parameters are important. For drinking water, there are several water quality indicators the presence of which may indicate the presence of contaminants which directly affect the health. At ENPHO, portability package for testing potability of water can be performed to determine if the water is potable or is safe for drinking. The potability package includes pH, temperature, total hardness, chloride, nitrate, ammonia, iron, manganese, arsenic, total coliform and E. coli.

Similarly for wastewater and other samples, there are several other parameters that can be tested at ENPHO laboratory.

 

The main sources of drinking water supplied by pipeline in Nepal are ground water and surface water sources. Many studies have shown significant seasonal variation as well as high level of microbial contamination during rainy seasons. Therefore, the test should be done seasonally i.e. at least twice a year to ensure drinking water is safe to consume. Deep wells should at least be tested once a year depending on the environmental activities in the neighborhoods; the frequency of test being higher (twice or more) in polluted areas. Water quality test must be performed immediately if any noticeable change occurs in color, odor or taste of the water. If the efficiency of the treatment system is to be tested, it is suggested to test the raw water and the treated water simultaneously.

It is fairly simple to get the water tested if you want to get it tested in ENPHO laboratory. For that, you can get the water sampling bottles (acid washed with added preservatives for metal analysis and sterilized ones for bacteriological test and other treatment as per the requirement of the test) from ENPHO laboratory. We also provide detailed oral and written descriptions/instructions about proper sampling technique to avoid contamination during sampling. Sometimes when the water cannot be tested in the laboratory e.g. in rural areas, the water can be tested using different field test kits developed in ENPHO.

Packages List

Package Name Parameters Description
Bacteria Count Only Package

2 parameters:

Total Coliform and E. coli

This package includes enumeration of total coliform and E. coli bacteria. Presence of E. coli in water sample indicates faecal contamination in the water sample and hence indicates potential presence of pathogenic organisms in the sample. This package excludes physico-chemical tests.

Current Potability Count Package

11 parameters:

pH, Turbidity, Total hardness, Chloride, Ammonia, Nitrate, Iron, Manganese, Arsenic, Total coliform and E. coli.

This package includes 11 parameters relevant for testing of quality of drinking water in context of Nepal. While some parameters like nitrate, arsenic and, total coliform and E. coli are health-based parameters while others like electrical conductivity , ammonia and chloride if found in excess amounts can indicate contamination of water with sewage or other sources of pollution. This package gives count of total coliform and E. coli bacteria in the water sample.

Bacteria Plus Physical Package

5 parameters:

pH, Turbidity, Electrical Conductivity, Total coliform and E. coli.

This package includes an enumeration of total coliform and E. coli bacteria and few other Physico-chemical tests.

4. Surface Water Potability Package with Bacteria Presence/Absence

12 parameters:

pH, Electrical Conductivity, Turbidity, Total hardness, Chloride, Ammonia, Nitrate, Iron, Manganese, Calcium, Orthophosphorus, H2S producing Coliforms Presence/Absence Test

This package includes 12 parameters relevant for testing of quality of surface water in context of Nepal. Examples of surface water sources are river, spring, streams etc.

Parameters like nitrate and coliforms are health-based parameters and others like electrical conductivity, ammonia and chloride if found in excess amounts can indicate contamination of water with sewage or other sources of pollution. This package only indicates the presence or absence of H2S producing coliform bacteria in the water sample.

Current Potability Package with Bacteria Presence/Absence

10 parameters:

pH, Turbidity, Total hardness, Chloride, Ammonia, Nitrate, Iron, Manganese, Arsenic and H2S producing Coliforms Presence/Absence test. 

This package includes 10 parameters relevant for testing of quality of drinking water in context of Nepal. Examples of ground water sources are dug wells, boreholes, tube wells etc. While some parameters like nitrate, arsenic and, total coliform and E. coli are health-based parameters while others like electrical conductivity , ammonia and chloride if found in excess amounts can indicate contamination of water with sewage or other sources of pollution. This package gives count of total coliform and E. coli bacteria in the water sample.

Surface Water Potability Package with Bacteria Count

13 parameters:

pH, Electrical Conductivity, Turbidity, Total hardness, Chloride, Ammonia, Nitrate, Iron, Manganese, Calcium, Orthophosphorus, Total coliform and E. coli.

This package includes 13 parameters relevant for testing of quality of surface water in context of Nepal. Examples of surface water sources are river, spring, streams etc. Some parameters like nitrate and coliforms are health-based parameters while others like electrical conductivity, ammonia and chloride if found in excess amounts can indicate contamination of water with sewage or other sources of

Ground Water Potability Package with Bacteria Presence/Absence

11 parameters:

pH, Electrical Conductivity, Turbidity, Total hardness, Chloride, Ammonia, Nitrate, Iron, Manganese, Arsenic, and H2S producing Coliforms Presence/Absence Test.

This package includes 11 parameters relevant for testing of quality of ground water in context of Nepal. Examples of ground water sources are dug wells, boreholes, tube wells etc.

The parameters tested in this package are

While some parameters like nitrate, arsenic and, coliforms are health-based parameters while others like electrical conductivity, ammonia and chloride if found in excess amounts can indicate contamination of water with sewage or other sources of pollution. This package only indicates the presence or absence of H2S producing coliform bacteria in the water sample.

Ground water Potability Package with Bacteria Count

pH, Electrical Conductivity, Turbidity, Total hardness, Chloride, Ammonia, Nitrate, Iron, Manganese, Arsenic, Total coliform and E. coli.

This package includes 12 parameters relevant for testing of quality of ground water in context of Nepal. Examples of ground water sources are dug wells, boreholes, tube wells etc.

Parameters like nitrate, arsenic and, total coliform and E. coli are health-based parameters while others like electrical conductivity , ammonia and chloride if found in excess amounts can indicate contamination of water with sewage or other sources of pollution. This package gives count of total coliform and E. coli bacteria in the water sample.

National Drinking Water Quality Standards

27 parameters:

pH, Turbidity, Color, Taste, Odor, Electrical Conductivity, Total Dissolved Solids, Residual Chlorine, Ammonia, Chloride, Nitrate, Total Hardness, Calcium, Iron, Manganese, Sulphate, Arsenic, Cadmium, Copper, Fluoride, Cyanide, Lead, Chromium, Zinc, Mercury, Aluminium, E. coli and Total coliform. 

This package includes all the 27 parameters included in the National Drinking Water Quality Standards (NDWQS), 2005 of Nepal. This package includes physico-chemical and biological parameters. While some parameters like arsenic, mercury, lead, cadmium, fluoride etc. are health-based parameters others are important from engineering point of view like pH, total hardness, Calcium or from aesthetic view-point like taste, odor, iron etc.