ICP water testing is a fairly recent service that has been made available to aquarists. By mailing in a sample of your aquarium or RO/DI water, you can get an accurate and detailed report of what exactly is in your water. This has helped us not only get a more thorough understanding of what goes on inside our tanks but is also an incredibly powerful tool for identifying problems, specifically around water chemistry and contaminants. 

ATI ICP-OES Water Anaylsis is one of a few different ICP testing services available to hobbyists but is the only one that tests your RO/DI water in addition to your aquarium water.  The testing kit comes with water sample vials for both your aquarium and RO/DI water, detailed instructions, and a prepaid return shipping label that is used to mail your water samples to the testing facility. Within 1-2 weeks the detailed analysis of your water is sent via email and covers 43 different parameters:

  • Major, minor, and trace elements
  • Salinity
  • Pollutants 
  • Nutrients (nitrate)

The tests are run on both your aquarium water and RO/DI water using state-of-the-art Spectros Athos ICP Machines. ATI also touts that their ICP machines are calibrated for testing seawater and are religiously checked for accuracy using known reference samples each and every day. That means you can not only be confident you're getting the most comprehensive ICP service, but also the best possible accuracy. 

Why ICP?

You might ask yourself why is ICP testing so valuable when you can just as easily monitor all of the critical parameters with hobby-grade water test kits at home? While we do agree, most of your water monitoring should be done at home, a periodic ICP test can serve a few very important functions and compliment your regular water testing routine. 

  • Confirm your testing accurately and maintain critical parameters correctly.
  • Identify the slow build-up of harmful contaminants.
  • Help you monitor trace and minor elements to ensure ionic balance.
  • Verify your RO/DI system is working correctly and not allowing for any contaminants to pass through.