Detection of water contamination from hydraulic fracturing wastewater: a μPAD for bromide analysis in natural waters†
Due to the rapid expansion in hydraulic fracturing (fracking), there is a need for robust, portable and specific water analysis techniques. Early detection of contamination is crucial for the prevention of lasting environmental damage. Bromide can potentially function as an early indicator of water contamination by fracking waste, because there is a high concentration of bromide ions in fracking wastewaters. To facilitate this, a microfluidic paper-based analytical device (μPAD) has been developed and optimized for the quantitative colorimetric detection of bromide in water using a smartphone. A paper microfluidic platform offers the advantages of inexpensive fabrication, elimination of unstable wet reagents, portability and high adaptability for widespread distribution. These features make this assay an attractive option for a new field test for on-site determination of bromide.