U.S. Department of Defense


Date of this Version



Environmental Pollution 162 (2012) 449-456; doi:10.1016/j.envpol.2011.11.018


In situ-based testing using aquatic organisms has been widely reported, but is often limited in scope and practical usefulness in making decisions on ecological risk and remediation. To provide this capability, an integrated deployment system, the Sediment Ecotoxicity Assessment (SEA) Ring was developed, which incorporates rapid in situ hydrological, chemical, bioaccumulation, and toxicological Lines-of-Evidence (LoE) for assessing sediment and overlying water contamination. The SEA Ring system allows for diver-assisted, or diverless, deployment of multiple species of ecologically relevant and indigenous organisms in three different exposures (overlying water, sediment-water interface, and bulk sediment) for periods ranging from two days to three weeks, in a range of water systems. Measured endpoints were both sublethal and lethal effects as well as bioaccumulation. In addition, integrated passive sampling devices for detecting nonpolar organics (solid phase micro-extraction fibers) and metals (diffusive gradients in thin films) provided gradient measures in overlying waters and surficial sediments.