The objectives of WG3 are to (1) understand the potential of the tools available for the analysis, (2) to help European and developing countries to assess harmonized methods, and (3) to facilitate and encourage access to EU research infrastructures and facilities. The planned activities will include the establishment of guidelines and standard operating procedures for established analytical approaches such as optical/fluorescence microscopy, vibrational spectroscopy (Fourier transform infrared and Raman spectroscopy), and thermal methods (e.g., differential scanning calorimetry or pyrolysis gas chromatography mass spectrometry). For the established techniques, special emphasis will be placed on standardized methods with a higher throughput, in order to realize a statistically relevant characterization of samples. On the other hand, novel analytical approaches having the potential to detect as well as identify plastic particles of a few mm or submicron size (NP), preferably in its native state, will be evaluated and established. The latter will be carried out in close collaboration with WG4 to establish novel nanospectroscopic and masspetrometric approaches as a tool for this so-far predominantly uncharted field. Providing access of standardized established, as well as newly developed, innovative approaches for users across Europe and beyond, in combination with training to enable efficient use, represents another key part of work.
Subgroups and subgroup leader
Subgroup 1 – Microscopy (optical, fluorescence)
Leader: dr. Inta Dimante-Deimantovica, Agency of Daugavpils University “Latvian Institute of Aquatic Ecology”, Latvia (email@example.com)
WG3 Kick-off meeting, on-line (7th April 2022)
The aim of this meeting was introduction of COST Action PRIORITY to the WG1 participants, as well as short self-introduction of the participants. Results of the questionnaire shared among participants showed that they are mostly in academia and focus on microscopy, spectroscopy and thermal methods of micro- and nanoplastic (MNP) characterization as well as on data analysis and modelling. Many PRIORITY participants want to contribute in harmonization and standardization activities in the field of MNPs. They are also interested in training their colleagues to familiarize them with different analytical techniques.
During the meeting it was also discussed several other points such as:
- Contribution of WP3 to objectives of COST action: The main objectives target collaborative projects, sharing know-how increase standardization as well as training of researchers (capacity building).
- Contribution of the WG3 to the deliverables
- Short term scientific mission (STSM) and ITC Conference Grants
- WG3 structure & networking with other WGs
Completed or ongoing activities
This Training School of 5 days had 73 participants, included 12 + 4 lectures and more than 60 poster pitch talks / poster session. Beside on-site lectures/posters/hike, and an excursion to the Research Center Rossendorf / Dresden was organized.
The study was planned and initiated in two subgroup leader meetings at 22.10.2022 and 24.04.2023 and a proposal for a study was presented at the WG 3 session at the Full Action Meeting (20.09.2023). After the Full Action Meeting a subgroup leader meeting took place at 29.09.2023 and also Thomas Meisel (WG6) participated. It was decided to do some initial tests on water heaters and baby bottles to check if these subjects would release enough material to be analyzed and could be suitable for a joint study. After the pre-analysis the joint study might start.