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Presentation and missions of the Nancy Laboratory for Hydrology

Acting Laboratory Director: Christophe Rosin

Address: 40, rue Lionnois 54000 Nancy

Number of employees: 25, spread across two units

The Nancy Laboratory for Hydrology works to improve the quality of drinking water, natural mineral water and recreational water. Its missions cover the entire country. It provides the French Directorate General for Health (DGS) with scientific and technical support and promotes the production of reliable, robust data by approved laboratories. Lastly, it contributes to identifying and characterising new risks related to water and improving knowledge on the origins and behaviour of new contaminants and pathogens.

The laboratory's missions

  • Reference laboratory: the Nancy Laboratory for Hydrology is the National Reference Laboratory for drinking water, natural mineral water and recreational water.
     
  • Issuing, amending and withdrawing laboratory approvals to conduct sampling and analyses for water quality monitoring purposes 

Since 1 March 2021, the laboratory has been entrusted with new missions that involve managing laboratory approvals to conduct sampling and analyses for water quality monitoring purposes. This concerns drinking water, natural mineral water, natural bathing water and water for swimming pools and artificial bathing pools; however, it does not apply to approvals for radioactivity analyses, which fall within the sphere of competence of the French Minister of Health.
Find out more
about applications for laboratory approvals to conduct sampling and analyses for water quality monitoring purposes.

  • Studies and research: the laboratory also promotes a programme of studies and research on the entire water cycle, from the quality of raw water, used for drinking water production, to the consumer's tap, including bottled water and recreational water.

 

The laboratory’s units

  • Water Chemistry Unit

Head of Unit: Christophe Rosin

The Water Chemistry Unit is involved in various scientific research and reference activities in connection with emerging chemicals of interest (drug residues, perfluorinated compounds, hexavalent chromium, etc.).
Most of these are not regulated and do not have a set quality limit, which is why they are not screened for as part of the quality monitoring of drinking water. To determine contamination levels for these substances and understand how they behave in drinking water and water resources, the unit takes part in studies and regularly organises national campaigns. This work enables new analytical methods to be developed and provides prevalence data, for assessing human exposure to these substances via water for consumption.

The unit also provides scientific and technical support on behalf of the Directorate General for Health. It carries out missions as the National Reference Laboratory for drinking water, natural mineral water and recreational water. Lastly, it promotes a study and research programme on the origin, transfer and transformation of emerging substances in water.

  • Water Microbiology Unit

Head of Unit: Benoit Gassilloud

The Water Microbiology Unit is involved in scientific and reference activities related to the safety of drinking water, bottled water and recreational water. These fall within the scope of ANSES's strategic priorities in the areas of food safety, epidemiology and surveillance.

The unit’s activities aim to understand and characterise contamination by pathogenicity class 2 or 3 micro-organisms in water resources and water intended for the various uses listed above. To do this, the unit develops and assesses techniques for detecting substances in water, in order to carry out prevalence studies and studies aiming to understand the behaviour of these micro-organisms.

Acquiring knowledge in these areas helps improve the health control of microbiological contamination in water, the descriptive epidemiology of waterborne illness outbreaks, detection capacities, knowledge on the prevalence of these pathogens, and decision-making by the health authorities in conjunction with risk managers. 

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