Andy Booth


I am currently employed as a research scientist by SINTEF Materials and Chemistry, located within the Fate and Effects Group in the Department of Marine Environmental technology. I am an environmental organic chemist/geochemist specialising in the analysis, fate and effects of organic chemical pollutants. My background is in the fate and effects of petroleum-derived compounds in the envrionment and work closely with other scientists in my research group in this area. These include other analytical chemists, ecotoxicologists and microbiologists. More recently, my research interests have diversified significantly and I have been involved in a number of projects focusing on the environmental fate and effects of engineered nanoparticles.


Research Scientist at SINTEF Materials and Chemistry

SINTEF is the largest independent research institute in Scandinavia. SINTEF is a broadly based, multidisciplinary research concern that possesses international top-level expertise in technology, medicine and the social sciences. As an independent, non-commercial organisation, the profits of SINTEF contract research projects are invested in new research, scientific equipment and competence development. SINTEF operates in partnership with the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, and collaborates with other leading research organisations in Norway and abroad. SINTEF is one of the leading European institutes in environmental research and has many national roles and projects related to aspects of environmental pollution. The institute has strong background in development of environmental legislation at the national level in Norway. The SINTEF MC conducts approximately 100s projects every year for government, industry and national and international organisations and is successful in obtaining scientific funding; coordinating and participating in many on-going EU-funded projects.
Competence. SINTEF MC has broad expertise in environmental fate and effects assessment. Our main focus is on development of safe nanomaterials based on linking observable environmental fate and effects data with physico-chemical properties of nanomaterials. Our laboratories have a research focus on assessment of molecular (microarray metabolomics) and fitness-related (survival, growth, reproduction) endpoints. Within this field SINTEF MC is coordinating a research council funded project looking at the relationship between carbon-based nanomaterials and other environmental pollutants. In addition, SINTEF MC is the main coordinator for the national level platform SafeNano Norway. Aspects of HSE are also routinely integrated into many of SINTEF MC's technology and materials development projects.

Infrastructure: The MET department comprises of Analytical Chemistry (with GC-MS, LC-ToF-MS, HPLC-UV/ELSD, GC-FID, GC-ECD instrumentation), Ecotoxicology and Microbiology laboratories with standard facilities such as a laminar flow cabinet, several centrifuges and incubators, light microscopes, electrophoresis (DGGE and agarose), PCR, RT-PCR. MET also maintains a number of key ecotoxicity test species in culture at our laboratories (e.g. Skeletonema costatum, Pseudokirchneriella subcaptitata, Calanus finmarchicus, Acartia tonsa, Daphnia magna, Corophium volutator). Owing to SINTEF MC's diverse research portfolio, a large amount of instrumentation relevant for determination of nanomaterial physico-chemical properties is also available, including DLS, fluorescence microscopy, electron microscopy (TEM and SEM), and Environmental Scanning Electron microscope technology (FEG-ESEM), TOF-SIMS, zeta potential (surface charge) and contact angle (wetting properties), XPS and FTIR (surface functionality).

Fields of scientific interest

My major interests are in the area of environmental chemistry, with particular emphasis in these areas:

Engineered nanoparticles

One of my other main areas of interest is the environmental fate and effects of engineered nanoparticles. Specifically, I am interested in how different nanoparticles and nanomaterials behave in the environment and to what degree they have the potential to elicit ecotoxicological responses in organisms. I beleive that an full understanding of the environmental fate and behaviour of nanoparticles is essential for targeting the most relevant ecotoxicity tests. I am also interested in how other organic chemical pollutants released into the environment interact with this nano particulate matter in terms of adsorption, transport, and the subsequent effects upon pollutant toxicity and biodegradability. In 2010, I have had the opportunity to lead a diverse group of scientists in the formation of a national network focused on HSE and ELSA issues connected to nanotechnology (SafeNano Norway Network).

Daphnia uptake




Fluorescently labelled polymeric nanoparticles in the gut of Daphnia magna following ingestion after aqueous exposure. Image taken by Dag Altin, BioTrix.


 Analytical Chemistry

My background is in analytical chemistry, with a specialism in the analysis of organic chemical pollutants in environmental samples. I have significant experience in many gas chromatographic techniques (GC-FID, GC-MS, GC-ECD and GC-ToF-MS). I have also experience and competence in the use of HPLC, LC-MS and LC-ToF-MS instruments as well as other analytical detectors (IR and UV). I enjoy using and developing analytical methods and techniques to help in the studies of environmental pollutants.



Year(s) Project name Project description
2009-2010 EnviroNano

The fate and effects of polymeric nanoparticles in aquatic environments

2011-2012 NanoSilver Development and ecotoxicological assessment of new generation antibacterial nansilver materials
2011-2014 NanoSorb Sorption to engineered nanomaterials and its impact on the bioavailability/toxocity of fossil fuel-derived hydsrocarbons to aquatic organisms




Conference Presentations

  • Norsk Vannforening Seminar on new environmental pollutant fate and effects, Oslo, Norway, 20 October 2010. Oral Presentation: "The objectives and strategy of Safe Nano Network - Results so far".
  • NECC 2010: Nordic Environmental Chemistry Conference, Longyearbyen, Svalbard, 2-5 March 2010. Oral Presentation: "The behavior and toxicity of engineered polymeric- and silica-based nanoparticles in aqueous environments".
  • NANOMAT Conference 2009, Lillehammer, Norway, 16-17 June 2009. Poster Presentation: “The environmental fate and effects of engineered acrylate-based polymeric nanoparticles”.

Published February 15, 2011